If you’ve ever been to a potluck with us, or seen us after a road trip, you know that a bean salad is one of our staples. For some reason, I haven’t featured it on the blog. However, I’ve recently discovered lentil salad as an alternative. The reason these are important staples is: (1) they are high in protein and fiber so they are super filling and therefore reliable when we may be stuck in an environment without many vegan options; and (2) it is easy to make from non-perishables you have on hand.
The lentil salad is modified from a recipe in the April/May 2012 issue of Vegetarian Times.
- 2 cups green or black lentils, rinsed
- 2-4 tablespoons oil (you can use more to make this for other people, such at a party)
- 4-5 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, or more, to taste
- 3-4 tablespoons honey, more or less to taste (again, I use up to 4 when I make this for other people, such as at a party)
- 4 bay leaves
- 4 or more chopped carrots (half or quartered moons) – optional
- 2 scallions/green onions, chopped
- dried cranberries
- approx 1/2 jar roasted red peppers, sliced and chopped (you could also use dried and reconstituted or fresh and diced peppers. Roasted is best, and you can get those in a jar)
1. Cook the lentils with the bay leaves following instructions on the package, or, cover with about 3 inches of water, boil and then simmer for about 30 minutes total, but after about 25 minutes…
2. … throw in the carrots, if using. Finish cooking for the remaining 5 minutes. Drain out any extra water and remove the bay leaves.
3. Mix lentils with the oil, vinegar, and honey in a bowl.
4. Then add in scallions/green onions, red peppers, walnuts, dried cranberries.
5. Season with salt/pepper to taste.
6. Let cool and marinade for a few hours before serving if possible.
Variations: play around with substitutes such as artichokes, beans, onions, cucumber, olives, etc…
And you have an easy, high protein, high fiber, traveling meal. Pictured below with carrots, but without green onions.
The oil and sweetener is usually more than I’m comfortable with. However, until I figure out alternative seasoning, it’s still pretty healthy and easy so I’m not going to worry about it.