It’s Meatless Monday! This is a fantastic lunch or dinner salad. Quinoa and lentils make it filling and crunchy.
My relationship with salad has become quite serious since I transitioned to being a flexitarian. (Shhh…don’t tell my husband.) A plant-based diet tends to revolve around the salad and I am always trying to find new spins and ways to dress up lettuce. Every time I make a salad it’s different and it all depends on what I have available. Toward the end of the week I try to make a “kitchen sink” salad with all of the leftover vegetables from the farmers market.
Let’s be honest, lettuce is almost always merely the vessel to deliver tangy dressings and sweet tomatoes. Home grown lettuce or fresh lettuce from the farmer’s market is an exception and has a wonderful earthy flavor. Lettuce grows very quickly too. In the summer you can have an almost endless supply if you plant seeds every 2-3 weeks. I have recently seen hydroponic systems that allow dirt free growing of vegetables and lettuce in particular. Has anyone every tried a hydroponic garden?
Salads don’t always have to be confined to lettuce. One of my favorite lunch spots in Washington D.C. was a place that only served salads. They had a chill case full of overflowing bowls of different beautiful salads with everything from pasta salads to arugula salads.
A dear friend gave me a copy of Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi cookbook and it has taken center stage on my bookshelf. The photography is beautiful but the flavor combinations are all unique and drool worthy. It is a vegetarian cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi that is full of salad recipes.
This recipe is is result of a “kitchen sink” salad. I love quinoa in salads. It is a complete protein that sticks to lettuce leaves and soaks up lemon and olive oil. What other grains or seeds do you like in your salad?
- 3 cups mixed greens
- ½ cup cooked quinoa
- ¼ cup cooked black lentils
- 1 small tomato, chopped
- 1 small avocado, chopped
- 1 small handful of sprouts
- ¼ onion, diced
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
- Toss all salad and dressing ingredients together in a bowl. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.