Who has never tried lentils? I until I made Roasted Veggie Lentil Salad would have to say me!
Now that I have tried them I will make them again…and again!!
Lentils are legumes like beans, chickpeas, or soybeans. The name “lentil” is from the Latin word for “lens,” which makes sense; they look like a little lens.
Commonly used here in North America, lentils have a mild and earthy flavor and ability to hold their texture after being cooked. Lentils are cheap(the bag I bought was 96 cents) and are nutrient-dense. Once prepared, they will last in the frig for a week. Uncooked, they will last 3-5 years in the pantry.
So, I have been following Lisa Bryan at Downshiftology, and first, let me say her blog and videos are fantastic; you should check her out!
Her recipes are simple and fresh, and she is an advocate of self-care and taking life “down a notch” (i.e., downshifting). Love her!!
Anyway, I was watching one of her meal prep videos, and she talked about making lentils. Light bulb moment: it was when the pandemic first started, and talk of food shortages was the story of the day. Besides, they looked tasty. It turns out they were!
Tim and I are always trying to eat healthily…tell that to the Häagen-Dazs Coffee ice cream in the freezer, but I digress. On the hunt for a recipe to use lentils in a salad, I searched Pinterest and came up with a plan.
We love roasted veggies, and beets are one of our favorites. There is something magical about roasted beets. Carrots are right up at the top of the list as well.
I think I have mentioned that we have been using Insta Cart and Wal Mart pick up since the COVID 19 pandemic started.
Truth be told, we have been using Wal Mart pick up from the time it was available in our area. It’s great.
But, here are a few flaws in the system, and I’m the flaw most of the time. When I order, I don’t always pay attention to pack size. I have also been known to order an item twice…in the same order…ugh! Feta Cheese! Let’s say we have plenty!
On a roll with the ingredients for this salad, I just needed a dressing (something creamy), and guess what? I had plenty of yogurt, as well. Herbs from my garden, I love summertime gardens! A creamy, herby yogurt dressing would be perfect for the roasted veggies. I was hoping it would pair with the lentils as well.
It did, all the ingredients came together to make a delicious hearty salad. The lentils had the mildly earthy flavor just as they were described. Roasted veggies added to that earthy flavor. Feta cheese is firm and crumbly with a tangy flavor that complemented the salad. Toasted almonds for crunch and the creamy, herby dressing made for a great introduction to lentils!!
Easy to make, can be made ahead, and good for you to boot, Roasted Veggie Lentil Salad is a must-try salad!Print
1 cup lentils, rinsed and picked over
One small yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 large bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 cups chicken stock (use vegetable stock for vegetarian)
1 bunch beets, scrubbed, trimmed, and cut into eighths
1 bag baby carrots
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3–4 tablespoons water
1/4 cup parsley, chopped, extra for garnish
1/4 cup dill, chopped, extra for garnish
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
Preheat to 425ºF.
Using a pressure cooker (aka Insta Pot), Select the sauté setting and heat the oil until hot. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
Add the lentils, broth, bay leaf, and salt. Cover with and lock down the lid. Pressure-cook for 15 minutes at HIGH pressure.
Once the cooking time completes, allow the pressure cooker to release pressure naturally; about 10 minutes. Once the pressure has released, turn the steam valve to release any remaining pressure. Remove the lid away from you. Taste the lentils and adjust with salt and pepper as needed. Discard the bay leaf. Set lentils aside.
While the lentils cook, toss the beets and carrots with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until browned and tender, stirring them halfway through cooking, 35 – 40 minutes or until tender. Cooking time will depend on the size of your veggies.
In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, chopped parsley, and dill, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and the water (add in 1 tablespoon at a time to the desired consistency).
To serve, toss the lentils with a drizzle of olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Place the lentils on a large serving platter (or divide among 4 serving plates). Top lentils with roasted vegetables, feta, extra dill and parsley, and toasted sliced almonds. Drizzle with the yogurt dressing and serve the extra dressing on the side. Can be served warm or at room temperature.
Lentils can be cooked on the stovetop following package directions.
Keywords: lentils, beets, carrots, yogurt, herbs, insta pot, salad, good for you