Warm lentil salad with bacon and herbs
Dan did not know there were lentils in the house. Two kinds, in fact: red and green. Nor was he aware that they had been in the house for a very long time, purchased back when I was experimenting with some paleo recipes.
I did not know that lentils are considered a lucky food. Lentils (actually all legumes, including peas and beans) are symbolic of money and are harbingers of prosperity. In Italy and France, it is a New Year’s Day tradition to eat lentil soup for luck.
We are about four days late but, given the current “transitioning” state of my career, I am feeling lucky to have even stumbled over the lentils in my cupboard. May good fortune shine on 2017! Even Dan, despite his lentil misgivings, could support that.
Rather than soup, I’ve eyeballed a warm lentil salad. The recipe comes from The Kitchn blog, which is always a good fun read and great source of dinner ideas.
I only had one shallot but two are recommended. I also substituted ground sage for the sage leaves, which may have been responsible for the salad tasting too similar to last week’s turkey stuff. Final suggestion from Dan — you could easily use half again as much dressing, or even a touch of lemon juice to brighten it up.
Kitchen castoff used
Green lentils. (Don’t use red lentils, as they get too soft. Green, or french, lentils hold their shape and texture better.)
This is how we did it
- 1 cup lentils, washed and rinsed
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 8 slices thick cut bacon
- 1 – 2 shallots
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2-3 tbsp minced fresh rosemary
- 1 – 2 sage leaves chopped (or a pinch of ground sage)
- 2 tbsps capers, chopped
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- Salt and pepper
Combine lentils and stock in a pot, bring to boil then simmer for about 20-25 minutes. If the liquid runs low, add more. If there is liquid left when the lentils are cooked, drain it away. Add some salt to the cooked lentils.
Cook the bacon. Drain fat, leaving behind about 2-3 tbsps, then add the shallots, garlic, rosemary and sage and cook for about 4 minutes. Shallots should be cooked but not too soft.
Chop the bacon and the capers
Combine the vinegar, olive oil and mustard together and set aside.
Add the cooked lentils to the pan with the shallots, garlic and herbs. Add the bacon and capers, then the dressing and mix together. Salt and pepper to taste; top with chopped parsley if you have any.
Serve warm. (By the way, these reheated great for lunch the next day.)
About my 100 day project: 100 days of cooking, using forgotten or cast-off kitchen ingredients.
If you like this, you might enjoy previous posts about my #100daysofcooking
Have you done a 100 day project? I’d love to hear about it