Monday, November 3

Lentil Salad with Garlic Balsamic

You wouldn't think this is a "hearty" meal just by looking at it. Afterall, it's a salad. But lentils are surprisingly filling and chock full of protein with a whopping 26% of their calories attributed to it. This makes them a great protein source for vegans, vegetarians and anyone who observes "meatless monday."

Lentils are also full of fiber and complex carbohydrates which give you energy. But unlike with starchy sources of fiber like bread, pasta and pizza the energy is slow releasing and won't lead to an insulin spike. However, perhaps the best thing about lentils is they have virtually no fat and very low calories (230 per cup as in this recipe) so they're great if you're watching your weight.

If you ask Dave for his favorite part of this recipe he will say garlic, garlic and garlic. The dressing absolutely makes the salad and I'm keeping it on hand for future recipes. Enjoy!

1 cup dry brown lentils
3 roma tomatoes
2-3 oz. spinach
1/4 cup chives (or shallot or green onion)
2 Tbsp. capers

{For the dressing}
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced


Cook lentils according to package directions, leaving firm, not mushy.
While lentils are cooking, make the dressing: in a small bowl combine all ingredients and whisk.
Roughly chop the spinach and chives, and dice tomatoes. Place in a large bowl.
When lentils are done cooking, drain, and immediately add to large bowl with spinach and tomatoes. The heat from the lentils will slightly wilt the spinach.
Add the dressing and capers and stir to combine.

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