There’s something addictive about this Chickpea and Lentil salad. The tangy tahini dressing with fresh lemon juice and smoky fresh toasted cumin is simply mouthwatering. I could eat this everyday! It’s lovely on its own for a filling protein-dense lunch. It’s also a nice accompaniment for dinner and makes a unique addition to a summer BBQ or picnic spread.
I’m currently obsessed with this chickpea and lentil salad. I first made this a few years ago when my oldest son was a baby. It’s adapted from my favourite food blog – Smitten Kitchen. I’m not sure why, but at some point I forgot about it and hadn’t made it in a long time. Then it popped up in my facebook feed a few weeks ago and I immediately started salivating!
At one point in the Smitten Kitchen post for her version of this Chickpea and Lentil Salad she comments “making the salad might seem pesky” and I wholeheartedly agree based on the original recipe! However, the version I have settled on is trimmed down and yet still packed with delicious and complex flavours. It’s now a quick enough endeavour for an everyday lunch that still brings a party to my mouth!
I always have a cupboard full of canned chickpeas (hummus is a staple of our diet around here) but have never been a fan of canned lentils – they’re smaller and less flavourful in my opinion. So, I use dried lentils which I simply cook on the stove until softened. I don’t bother with all of the flavourings she uses in the original recipe for the lentils. And, if I’m in a hurry, I simply omit the lentils all and throw together the other ingredients for s super speedy and satisfying lunch and if I want to fill it out a bit I’ll even serve it up over a bed of baby spinach.
The more plant-based our diet becomes, it’s important to develop my repertoire of legume recipes to make sure we’re getting our protein – especially with my brood of three growing boys. This recipe is a great staple for every week and not one that I’m likely to let fall off my radar again!
Chickpea and Lentil Salad
- 3/4 CUP DRIED GREEN LENTILS they’ll expand a bit to about 1 cup when cooked
- 1/4 CUP CUP CRUMBLED FETA
- 1/4 CUP CUP FRESH CILANTRO Gently chopped so not to bruise, or cut with scissors directly into the salad (my method of choice courtesy of Nigella Lawson)
- 1/4 RED ONION Very thinly sliced into half moons
- 2 LEMONS Juice only
- 2 TBSP TAHINI
- 2 TBSP OIL I use Canola, but substitute for Olive Oil if you prefer
- 1 TSP Ground Cumin Yes freshly toasted is a must!
- 1 TSP GROUND CORRIANDER
- 1/2 TSP SALT
- Cook the lentils in boiling water until softened.
- Slice the onions and add to a small bowl with the juice of 1 lemon and set aside.
- In a large bowl combine the oil, tahini, coriander, cumin and remaining lemon juice and mix well to make the dressing.
- Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl with the dressing and toss well to ensure salad is evenly coated.