Paris on my mind: Salade de Lentilles aux Lardons & Instagram

Why am I speaking French today?
Because when we return from a trip, I like to keep it going for a little while longer............

All week long we drink nice French wine and eat bread and cheese, and saucisson, and indulge in all the contraband I sneak home in my luggage (pates, sausages, duck confit.........).

In most bistros, you can get a nice lentil salad, made with Lentilles du Puy (French green/blue lentils from the Auvergne), studded with pieces of lardons (smoked pork). SO GOOD.

To date, this is my favorite recipe for lentil salad.
I haven't made it in a few years, but it just seemed right upon returning from our trip.

Delicious served warm or at room temperature.

Salade de Lentilles aux Lardons: (Lentil Salad w/ Bacon)

For the lentils:

1 1/2 cups French green lentilles du Puy (AOC)
4 slices of smoked ham, bacon or leftover roast pork, cut into lardons
a few springs of fresh thyme
sea salt & pepper
1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
1 medium onion, studded with 4 whole cloves
1 bulb of fennel, finely diced
fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish

For the vinaigrette:

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/8 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 small shallot, peeled and minced

Rinse the lentils and remove any foreign matter.

Cook the bacon in a heavy stockpot until the fat is rendered out and it is starting to turn red (if using leftover cooked ham, then add it in the salad at the very end).

Drain the bacon grease and return the bacon back into the pot.

Add the lentils and then enough water (about 3") to cover. You can also add chicken stock if you want even more flavor.

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, add a bit of salt, the carrots, fennel and studded onion, and simmer for 25-30 minutes, until the lentils are just tender, adding more water if necessary. Be sure not to overcook them.

Discard the onion and cloves after your lentils are done.

In a large bowl, mix together the ingredients for the vinaigrette and toss on the warm lentils.

Taste add more seasonings to taste.

Garnish w/ cilantro or parsley and serve warm or at room temperature.

Another note: I always forget about instagram!
Many of you followed me on facebook thru our trip, but if you would like to follow me on instagram, here is the link!

Bon Appetit!


SarahB said…
This salad looks so good! Love it in that plate...
Natalia said…
I'm a big fan of lentils, so I will definitely try this salad.

On another note, since you are a big fan of figs, I had to let you know about this. I just returned from a girls weekend where I tried Figenza - a fig liqueur. It was amazing - if you haven't tried it, I think you'd really like it! :)
Stacey Snacks said…
I tried Figenza about three years ago. Martini bar has a signature cocktail using it served in purple martini glasses!
AdriBarr said…
I love lentils, and your salad looks fabulous. Lentils and fennel are truly a wonderful match.

Welcome home, I certainly enjoyed your shots of your trip. Let's see more!
Anonymous said…
Have you tried the Lentil Salad from Around My French Table? It is also excellent.