Nice change of pace salad, perfect year-round, but especially nice for summer pot-lucks and cookouts, as there's no mayo to spoil. You could tweak this recipe quite a lot and add different spices to get a whole new recipe. This could work as both a main meal or as a side dish, depending on your preference.
- 1 cup lentils (I use brown)
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 bunch green onion, minced
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil
- 1 1⁄3 cups diced peeled cucumbers
- 2⁄3 cup diced plum tomato (seed if you like)
- 1⁄3 cup finely-chopped red onion
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or 1 tablespoon dried dill
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 6 ounces soft fresh goat cheese, chilled for easier crumbling (like Montrachet)
- 1⁄4 cup lightly-toasted walnuts or 1⁄4 cup pine nuts, with 2 t reserved for garnish (optional)
- Cook lentils in medium pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 25 minutes, and drain well.
- Whisk together in a large bowl vinegar, green onions and mustard in large bowl.
- Gradually whisk in oil.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Add lentils and let stand until cool.
- When cool, add cucumber, tomatoes, onion, dill, parsley and garlic to lentil mix.
- Season again with salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover and chill about 1 hour.
- Just before serving, crumble goat cheese over salad and mix gently to combine.
- If using lightly-toasted nuts, sprinkle over salad and gently mix in, reserving 2 T to garnish on the top.