Warm Lentil Salad with Swiss Chard and Feta Cheese

On October 26th, 2014, I demonstrated how to make this lentil salad at the Atlanta Botanical Garden, using fresh Swiss chard from the edible garden.

Servings: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup green lentils, picked over and rinsed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 teaspoons sea salt, divided
  • 1 small bunch Swiss chard (5-6 cups packed)
  • 4 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese

Instructions:

  1. Bring lentils, about 5 cups of water, and bay leaf to a boil in a medium saucepan, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, until almost tender, about 12 minutes. Stir in 3/4 teaspoon salt, and then simmer lentils, covered, until tender but not falling apart, 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Bring 6-8 cups of water and 3 teaspoons of salt to a boil. Cut chard stems and center ribs, discarding any tough portions, then cut stems and ribs crosswise into 2-inch pieces. Stack chard leaves and roll up lengthwise into cylinders. Cut cylinders crosswise to make 1-inch-wide strips. Place stems in the boiling water for 1 minute. Add leaves and cook an addition 1 minute. Drain well, squeezing out excess moisture.
  3. Make vinaigrette by whisking together vinegar, mustard, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper in a bowl. Add oil in a slow stream, whisking until blended well.
  4. Drain lentils well in a colander, discarding bay leaf, and return to saucepan along with cooked Swiss chard, green onion, garlic and vinaigrette. Place over low heat, stirring, until warmed through.
  5. Top each serving of lentils with crumbled feta cheese.

Recipe Developed by: Chef Ashley R. Van Cise, RDN, LD