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Warm Lentil Salad with Roasted Beets and Goat Cheese - Tomato Envy : Tomato Envy

Warm Lentil Salad with Roasted Beets and Goat Cheese

December 12, 2015 | By | Reply More

warm lentil salad

Recently when I served this warm lentil salad to Mr. President for dinner, he said, “If every salad was like this, I could totally be vegetarian!” That’s when I said, “Dude, there’s bacon in here.” So, yeah, there’s bacon, and it is fabulous!

We eat a lot of salads in our house, and I’m always looking for those that are substantial enough to take center stage for dinner. This one, adapted from Bobby Flay, is certainly in that category. The lentils make it a meal and the sweetness of the beets plays along nicely with the salty bacon and creamy goat cheese.

There are several components to this warm lentil salad, but there are ways to get the most from your efforts. For instance, when I roast beets for this recipe, I roast a lot of them to eat with my eggs for breakfast. I make a double batch of the delicious sherry vinaigrette because it keeps a long time in the fridge and is delicious on just about any salad. You can even double up on the lentils which can make a repeat appearance for an easy working lunch when paired with roasted veggies.

The commercial pork industry and the use of pig gestation crates has earned a lot of negative attention recently, and for good reason. It’s a dirty business. Whenever you indulge in eating bacon, try to do so with animal welfare and the environment in mind by choosing bacon from a farmer who raises pastured pigs. With growing consumer demand for humanely raised meats, accessibility is improving.

warm lentil saladIngredients for Sherry Vinaigrette

1/4 cup sherry vinegar

2 tsp. dijon mustard

1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

1/2 cup olive oil

Ingredients for Salad (Serves 4 as a main dish)

3 medium beets, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks

olive oil

1 onion, quartered

2 carrots, divided

1 stalk celery, quartered

1 bay leaf

2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme plus 4 sprigs fresh thyme, divided

1 quart chicken stock

1 1/4 cups dried French green lentils

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

1/4 pound bacon, diced

warm lentil salad2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped

1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar

4 cups mixed dark leafy salad greens

4 slices goat cheese

b Step one: Make the dressing

1/4 cup sherry vinegar

2 tsp. dijon mustard

1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

1/2 cup olive oil

warm lentil saladIn a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, thyme, salt, and pepper. While vigorously whisking, drizzle in the olive oil in a thin stream until emulsified and all oil is incorporated. Set dressing aside.

1 Step two:

1 onion, quartered

1 carrot, quartered

1 stalk celery, quartered

1 bay leaf

4 sprigs fresh thyme

warm lentil salad1 quart chicken stock

1 1/4 cups dried French green lentils

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

3 medium beets, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks

olive oil

Preheat oven to 425°. Toss beets with olive oil to coat and spread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Roast for about 30 minutes or until beets are tender all the way through when pierced with a fork. Set beets aside.

While the beets are roasting, cook the lentils. Begin by tying the quartered onion, celery, carrot, thyme sprigs and bay leaf together in a piece of cheesecloth. Place the bundle along with the chicken stock in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the lentils and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 20-30 minutes or until lentils are tender. Drain lentils, discard cheesecloth bundle, and season lentils with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

click Step three:

1/4 pound bacon, diced

2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped

1 carrot, peeled and finely diced

2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet and cook bacon over medium heat until crisp or to your liking. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels until ready to use. Remove all but about 2 tablespoons of fat from the skillet.

warm lentil saladOver medium heat, add the carrot and garlic to the skillet and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the reserved lentils and bacon to the skillet and stir to combine. Add the chopped fresh thyme and sherry vinegar.

go site Step four: Assemble the salad

4 cups mixed dark leafy salad greens

4 slices goat cheese

Divide the greens among four shallow bowls or large plates. Top the greens with some of the warm lentils and arrange some of the roasted beets around the plate. Top with a thick slice of goat cheese and serve with hunks of crusty French bread for a satisfying main course.

 

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watch Category: Food, Main Dishes, Recipes, Winter

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