Pickled Lentil Salad

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Main Ingredient: Vegetables
Menu Part: Salad
Cuisine Type: American
Serves: 6-8 servings

Pickling is one of the top trends of the year, according to the National Restaurant Association’s 2014 culinary forecast. Chef Leventhal lives in the heart of dry pea and lentil country in Eastern Washington state and makes the most of these high-protein crops in her recipe development. Here, she cooks and pickles lentils to use in a vegan salad.

Ingredients

1 cup dry lentils
2 large garlic cloves, smashed
2 bay leaves, divided
2 tsp. coriander seed
2 tsp. mustard seed
1/4 tsp. turmeric
1 cup distilled or rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tbsp. minced shallots
1 tsp. minced garlic
Grated zest from 1/2 lemon
Pinch chili flakes
Arugula and butter leaf lettuce
Champagne Vinaigrette (recipe follows)

Champagne Vinaigrette
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. minced shallots
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 cup Champagne vinegar
1/3 cup honey
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
Salt, to taste
1 cup grape seed or vegetable oil

Steps

  1. In large saucepan, bring lentils and 2 cups salted water to a low boil. Add smashed garlic and 1 bay leaf. Cook 20 min. or just until tender. Drain and spread on baking sheet to cool.
  2. In dry saucepan over med. heat., toast coriander seed until fragrant. Add 1 bay leaf, mustard seed, and turmeric; toast gently.
  3. Add vinegar, sugar, water, shallots, minced garlic, lemon zest and chili flakes; bring to a quick boil. Remove from heat and let stand to bloom flavors.
  4. Once lentils and brine have cooled, combine them in 2-qt. container; refrigerate overnight.
  5. For service, spoon lentil mixture on lettuce and arugula. Drizzle with Champagne Vinaigrette.

Champagne Vinaigrette
In blender, combine egg yolk, mustard, shallots and garlic; blend until smooth. Add vinegar, honey, lemon juice, pepper and salt; blend to mix. Slowly stream in oil; blend until emulsified.