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Recipe: Smoked Sun-Dried Tomato and Red Lentil Salad

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In a moment of panic for a 4th of July party, I didn’t have enough vegetarian options so I had to throw something together.  This was the result and it was one of the biggest hits at the party (second only to pulled pork on ciabatta with red cabbage)!


Smoked Sun-Dried Tomato and Red Lentil Salad

Serves 6

  • 1 cup dry red lentils
  • 1 medium cucumber, diced
  • 3-4 scallions, sliced
  • 1 cup smoked sun-dried tomatoes*, julienned
  • 2/3 cups crumbled feta cheese
  • 7-8 leaves basil, chiffonade (thin strips)
  • 2/3 cup fig balsamic vinegar**
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Bring 4 cups of water to a boil.  Remove from heat and add lentils.  Let sit for about 8-10 minutes, or until lentils are tender but still firm.  Drain well.  Toss the lentils with the vinegar and let sit for about 30 minutes, tossing every 10 minutes or so to allow the warm lentils to absorb the fig-balsamic flavor.

Finally, add the other ingredients, toss and enjoy!  I like this salad at room temperature but it’s also good cold, feel free to store it for 1-2 days to really let the flavors come together.


*Smoked sundried tomatoes are at many grocery stores these days; however, you can also easily smoke your own! Here’s how you can create your own smoker.  For these, use a combination of hickory and fruit wood (like apple or cherry) so the smokiness isn’t too intense.

** Fig balsamic vinegar was a gift I realize you might not have any.  You can make your own (which is an entirely different post) or purchase any fruit/sweet vinegar at a specialty shop.  The fruitiness offsets the smokiness, which is why this is a great combo.

If you’re really tight for time, reduce 1 cup balsamic vinegar to about half (to yield half a cup) and mince 6 figs – toss that with the lentils instead.



293 calories ∣ 119 calories from fat ∣ 14 g fat ∣ 4 g saturated fat ∣ 32 g carbs ∣ 5 g fiber ∣ 12g protein ∣ Excellent source of vitamin K ∣ Iron ∣ Folate

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