FRENCH LENTIL SALAD
This is Country food at its finest
Outstanding and versatile, Serve hot or cold
1 C. dried lentils, cleaned and rinsed
1 Tbsp. dijon style mustard
3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 C. extra-virgin olive oil
1 small carrot, diced
2 medium shallots or 1 sweet onion, diced
2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, diced
1/2 – 3/4 C ham, diced (optional)
Stovetop: Put lentils in a 4 qt. saucepan, add water to cover lentils by 2″. Set over medium-high heat and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat to low, then simmer until they are done, about 15 minutes. Test for doneness, they should be just tender.
Crockpot: Put lentils and enough water to cover them by 2″. Set on low, and let cook for 3-5 hours. Test for doneness.
Drain and rinse lentils, cover and set aside.
In a small bowl, whisk together mustard, vinegar and a pinch each of salt and pepper. While continuing to whisk, drizzle in the oil and whisk until fully combined and emulsified.
Drain any lingering liquid off the lentils, and place them in a medium mixing bowl. Add the vinaigrette, carrots, shallots, parsley and ham (if desired). Toss gently. Taste, add more vinegar, salt and pepper if necessary. The dressing should have a hint of mustard and enough acidity to offset the richness of the lentils.
This is a marvelous dish, so you may as well make extra! Will keep in the fridge for a few days. Enjoy!