What a perfect way to celebrate fall than with a salad?

Greek lentil salad with roasted beetroot makes an awesome healthy lunch on its own…

 

This Greek lentil salad with roasted beetroot will definitely win you over.
You’ll be surprised to see how well sweet roasted beetroots, sour goat cheese and lentils go
together.
Our inspiration for this salad came from one of our favorite taverns in the center of Athens.
They serve a similar Mediterranean lentil salad with beetroot which we absolutely love!
In this recipe, we used Beluga lentils.
They owe their name to their glorious appearance, as they really look like the famous Beluga
caviar.
Beluga lentils are smaller than regular lentils and are pitch black, rather than brown.
They are suitable for salads, as they keep their shape extremely well and don’t become
mushy when boiled.
When cooking Beluga lentils, it’s important to let them simmer on medium heat.
This will prevent the lentils from splitting.
Also, you need to let them cool down and drain really well, before mixing them with the rest
of the ingredients.
Beetroot lentil salad should be served cold or at room temperature.

…you can substitute spicy soft feta cheese for sour goat cheese

 

We choose to roast our beetroots in the oven rather than boil them.
If you’ve never had them this way, you’ll be impressed with how the earthy and sweet flavor
of the beetroot comes out.
The secret is to wrap them in tin foil and sprinkle with coarse salt.
Beetroots should have cooled down to room temperature, before mixing them in the salad.
A tip to remember, is to peel back the skins while the beetroots are still warm.
This will allow the beetroot skin to peel back smoothly, without any difficulty.
While you let the beetroot quarters cool, mix in the thinly sliced onion.
This will give your onion a beautiful red-purple colour and a lovely sweet flavor.
Sour goat cheese is a white soft cheese, with a subtle tangy flavor.
It goes wonderfully well with fruits and sweet root vegetables like beetroot.
If you can’t find it where you live, spicy crumbled feta cheese will also work really well!
When all the ingredients have cooled down, you’re ready to combine them!
Simply toss everything together and sprinkle with fresh parsley and balsamic vinegar.
This beetroot and lentil salad, keeps great in the fridge, for a couple of days.
I would advise to keep the goat cheese separately and mix it in the lentil salad whenever you’re ready to serve!
Have a lovely fall everyone!

Beluga lentils are known as “the poor man’s caviar”…

 

GREEK LENTIL SALAD WITH ROASTED BEETROOT

Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients

For the Beluga lentils

  • 250 gr Beluga lentils, rinsed & cleaned
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cube bio chicken or vegetable stock (optional)
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 100 gr soft sour goat cheese, crumbled
  • 4-5 sprigs fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2-3 pinches ground cumin
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Balsamic cream
  • Salt
  • Pepper

For the roasted beetroot

  • 4-5 medium fresh beetroot heads
  • Coarse salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar

Instructions

For the roasted beetroot

  • Preheat oven to 190 degrees Celsius/fan mode.
  • Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Cut a piece of aluminum foil and sprinkle it with coarse salt in the center.
  • Place a beetroot head on the coarse salt, wrap in packet and transfer on the baking sheet.
  • Repeat until no beetroot heads are left.
  • Roast in the oven until tender, but crisp, for approximately 45-50 minutes.
  • Remove the baking sheet from the oven.
  • Open the foil packets and let the beetroots to cool for a while, until you can handle them.
  • Peel, cut into quarters and transfer them in a bowl.
  • In the bowl, add the onion and a little bit of olive oil and vinegar.
  • Toss gently and keep aside.

For The Beluga lentils

  • Pour 1 lt. of water in a medium pot.
  • Add the Beluga lentils, the bay leaf and the bio chicken or vegetable stock, should you use one.
  • Cover with a lid, bring to a boil and reduce to simmer.
  • Cook lentils for approximately 20 minutes.
  • Be careful not to overcook them! You want them to be al dente! So, after the first 15 minutes, check every 1-2 minutes for doneness.
  • When the Beluga lentils are cooked, remove the pot from the heat and drain them.
  • Rinse them gently under cold water, so as to stop the cooking process (just keep them warm).
  • Remove the bay leaf with any excess liquid and transfer them into a serving bowl.

Assembly

  • Into the serving bowl with the Beluga lentils, add the roasted beetroots, onion, ground cumin and parsley.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar, according to your liking.
  • Toss gently and taste.
  • Top with the crumbled goat cheese and drizzle with balsamic cream.
  • Serve at once and enjoy!