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Green Lentil Salad with Red Peppers and Shallots

Green French lentils have a nutty, peppery flavor and a firm texture that holds up well to cooking and marinating. This flavorful legume salad makes a delicious accompaniment to broiled salmon with lemon or a simple roast chicken.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup small green or brown lentils
  • 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced shallots
  • 1/2 cup roasted red pepper strips
  • 3 1/2 Tbs. sherry vinegar
  • 3 Tbs. coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Directions:

Pick over the lentils to remove misshapen ones, then rinse and drain. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil over high heat. Add the lentils, reduce the heat and simmer until the lentils are tender to the bite, 18 to 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large nonstick fry pan over medium-high heat, warm 2 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the shallots and cook until softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the heat and cook, stirring frequently, until the shallots are browned, 5 to 8 minutes more. Set aside.

Drain the lentils and put in a bowl. Stir in the bell pepper strips, vinegar, parsley, salt, shallots and the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil.

Serve the salad warm or at room temperature, stirring well before serving. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Eat Well, by Charity Ferreira (Oxmoor House, 2008).