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Lentil and Piquillo Pepper Salad With Toasted-Garlic Vinaigrette

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salad days

Fresh, healthy, and filling, this salad will win over your heart and stomach.

Ingredients

Makes 4 servings.

1 and 1/2 cups green lentils, picked over
1 bay leaf
Kosher salt
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
4 large garlic cloves, very thinly sliced
1/4 cup sherry vinegar; more as needed
12 roasted piquillo peppers, torn into 1/2-inch-wide strips
2/3 cup roughly chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

Directions

1. Put the lentils and bay leaf in a medium pot; cover with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil and season with a generous pinch of salt. Reduce heat and simmer until the lentils are tender but not mushy, 20 to 30 minutes. If the lentils start to peek through the cooking liquid, add more water.

2. Pour the lentils and their liquid into a large, shallow container. Set aside and let the lentils cool to room temperature in their liquid.

3. For the vinaigrette, warm a small sauté pan over medium heat. Add olive oil and garlic and sauté, swirling the pan, until the garlic is golden brown (take care not to let it burn). Transfer garlic and oil to a medium bowl and add vinegar and a pinch of salt. Add the peppers and stir to combine. Taste the mixture and stir in more salt or vinegar, if necessary. Let the mixture sit for at least 10 minutes.

4. Remove bay leaf and drain the lentils well. Add lentils and parsley to the bowl and the peppers. Toss gently to combine; taste to check salt and vinegar. Spoon the salad onto a large platter or individual serving plates, and finish with a generous drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil. Serve at room temperature.

This recipe was printed with permission from Tasha DeSerio's book, Salad for Dinner: Simple Recipes for Salads That Make a Meal.
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