Thursday, October 11, 2012

Beluga lentil salad with beets and Feta

Beluga lentils are the perfect lentils to use in a salad since they hold their shape after cooking. Once cooked they glisten, which makes them look like caviar. Combined with sweet beetroots and salty feta with some pomegranate for that crunch and burst of sweet-tart goodness, this salad not only looks stunning but also tastes fantastic. And whats more, it even tastes great a couple of days after. The final addition of parsley gives the color contrast and some freshness.

Beluga lentil salad with beets and Feta

1 cup beluga lentils
2 small red beets
4 oz Greek Feta cheese
2 small cloves of garlic, peeled
1 small shallot, peeled and cut into two
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ - ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/8 teaspoon chili flakes
¼ cup finely chopped parsley leaves
¼ cup shelled pomegranate

1. Cook the beluga lentils with enough water, ½ teaspoon salt, one small clove of garlic, and the shallot for about 20 minutes over medium heat till they are soft but hold their shape.
2. While the lentils are cooking or prior, cut the feta into ¼ inch cubes and marinate them with olive oil, one clove of minced garlic and chili flakes for at least 1 hour.
3. Drain the lentils and transfer to a mixing bowl. Add the red wine vinegar and allow the lentils to cool.
4. In the meantime, boil the beetroots for 15 to 20 minutes till they are soft. Cool, peel and cut into ¼ inch cubes. Add to the lentils and toss.
5. When the lentils and beets have cooled completely, add the feta cubes along with the marinade and ¼ teaspoon salt or to taste and mix well.
6. Refrigerate, till you are ready to serve. Just before serving, add the pomegranates and the chopped parsley.

Serves 4 to 6

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