5 hours ago
Thursday, November 18, 2010
It's lentil time again. The cooler months call me to make lentil salads and lentil soups.
I never think to make lentils in the summer. It's a winter thang.
You know I am crazy about my lentils du Puy, from the Auvergne region of France.
They are blue greenish in color and are the very best. Try and find ones that have an A.O.C. label on them (Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée: "From that region" by French law).
This recipe comes from Dorie Greenspan's new book Around My French Table.
The book is not haute cuisine by any stretch, nor is it really a French cookbook.
It's a book compiled of simple, French inspired recipes, tried and true by Dorie herself, who lives in NYC half the year, and Paris the other half (my dream!).
Simple roast meats and gougeres, as well as fruit tarts and tagines are included in this big book. Easy recipes for the home cook with Dorie's nice style of writing, as if she is chatting with you personally about the food.
This recipe made for a terrific lunch, and it was delicious the next day as well.
I used 2 tiny preserved lemons from my huge jar from the Middle Eastern food store (I have 30 left!!).
Dorie's Lentil Salad w/ Tuna & Preserved Lemons:
2 tsp black tapenade (olive paste found in Italian specialty stores, or you can make your own)
2 tsp French grainy mustard
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
3 Tbsp olive oil
whisk dressing ingredients together and set aside
3 cups of cooked lentils du Puy
1 garlic clove, smashed
1 small onion, studded with a whole clove
1 dried bay leaf
1 carrot, peeled and diced
salt & pepper to taste
Rinse lentils in a strainer and sort through. In a large pot, cover lentils with 3" of water and start to boil. Add the bay leaf, the chopped carrots, an onion studded with a whole clove, and a smashed garlic clove.
Simmer about 25-30 minutes until lentils are tender but not mushy. Remove onion and bay leaf.
If there is some liquid left in the pot, strain it out.
Add warm lentils to bowl with the dressing, toss and set aside.
6 oz. Italian tuna, packed in oil
2 scallions, sliced (I used chives because they are still alive in my garden!)
1-2 preserved lemons, depending on their size, chopped (use rind and middle parts)
add the flaked and drained tuna to the lentils with the scallions and chopped lemons.
Season with salt & pepper and drizzle with some olive oil before serving.
It is best served cooled in the fridge for 2 hours. If you are serving it the next day, bring to room temperature and correct seasonings and add more olive oil.
Since it's almost the holidays, I will be giving away 2 of Dorie's new cookbooks, Around My French Table.
Tell us your favorite holiday dish and 2 random winners will be announced on Tues., November 23.
Good luck and enjoy!