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A short while ago, I wrote a post about the number one principle of vegetarian eating: combining for protein.

So, in honour of combining for protein, here I present a salad that I took to a pre-Christmas barbeque at Em’s place. Sadly, most of this salad is hidden by the fetta, but trust me, it’s a tasty one that will win the approval of all your friends – omnivores, half and full vegetarians alike.

The bulk of the salad is made up of the purple/brown de Puy (French) lentils. These little beauties hold their shape after cooking.

I also added some buckwheat. Buckwheat is not actually a wheat or grain. According to Jude Blereau in Wholefood, it’s a fruit that is related to the rhubarb family. Blereau also said that it is high in lysine (a protein) and is a rich source of B vitamins. That makes it a good food for vegos.

I cooked the lentils and buckwheat by the induction method. However, I don’t recommend this for the salad. They end up all stodgy and work better if you rinse after boiling.

I’ve also made a similar salad in winter using roasted pumpkin and roquette but no cucumber. (To be honest, I don’t think the buckwheat is the best option for this salad. It’s just a bit stodgy. I’m keen to maintain the ‘combining for protein’ principle, but maybe I’ll try some barley, quinoa or freekeh next time…)

Lentil and Buckwheat salad

1 cup lentils
½ cup buckwheat
EVO oil
½ red onion, finely diced
2-3 garlic cloves
pinch of dried chilli flakes (optional)
1-2 Lebanese cucumbers, diced
1 lemon, juiced
salt and pepper
herbs (mint, coriander, flat-leaf parsley…), chopped
100g fetta

  • Cook lentils in boiling water for about 15-20 minutes until they become soft. Drain, rinse and cool.
  • Cook buckwheat in simmering/boiling water for about 15 minutes until they become tender. Drain, rinse and cool. Mix with lentils.
  • Fry onion, garlic and chilli flakes at a low temperature for about 10 minutes, until onion is sweet and soft. Cool mixture and add to lentils and buckwheat.
  • Add lemon juice, cucumbers and salt and pepper to lentils/buckwheat mixture.
  • Just before serving, add herbs and fetta.
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