Friday, September 12, 2014

FFWD ~ Basic French Lentils and a Classic Lentil Salad

FFWD ~ Classic Lentil Salad


Hello everyone! It’s time for French Fridays again. This week we have a very basic dish to serve up...French Lentils! Lentils have always been part of my life. I grew up on them. My grandmother would serve them weekly, as part of our meatless Friday menu. How many of you remember those meatless Fridays? Once, while in high school, I went with some girlfriends to the Newbury’s lunch counter, to grab an after school snack. I was really hungry and ordered a hot dog. Then I remembered it was Friday! Being the good Catholic girl I was, I reluctantly walked away from that hot dog. Even though I was starving, and had no money to buy anything else! In my thirteen-year-old mind, I was comforted in knowing I had not committed a sin, that could send me straight to...you know where.

I loved the goat cheese added to this salad…creamy and rich tasting

I was really looking forward to trying Dorie’s Basic French Lentil recipe, and it did not disappoint.
French Lentils, otherwise known as lentilles du Puy, are a smaller, green-gray variety that grow in France. The name comes from the region of France where they are grown. When they are cooked, they hold their shape, which makes them perfect for salads. 

du Puy lentils compared to the normal brown lentil

Dorie’s recipe for the French Lentils is simple and delicious. The lentilles du Puy, are cooked in chicken broth, along with celery, carrots, an onion, cloves, garlic, and a bay leaf till tender.  Once the lentils are cooked, remove from the heat, and add a tablespoon of Cognac and a chopped shallot. These lentils have a rich, deep warm flavor, that I truly enjoyed.

The book gives several options for serving the lentils. Honestly, I loved them right out of the pot…a perfect side dish! However, one option Dorie suggests for serving them, is with a Dijon vinaigrette, as a salad. It’s made with Dijon mustard, walnut oil, sherry vinegar, salt, and freshly ground pepper. I chose to make the salad with the vinaigrette, and added some goat cheese to mine!  A la Dorie! A lovely lunch to say the least! Happy Friday everyone!

This recipe can be found in Dorie’s cookbook, “Around My French Table”, or here at Serious Eats. To see how the other Dorista’s chose to make their lentils, check it out here on the FrenchFriday webpage



Delicious Classic Lentil Salad…Happy Friday everyone!

27 comments:

  1. Beautiful lentil salad, Kathy! I love lentils, and this would be an ideal side dish as well. So colorful and delicious! Have a wonderful weekend, my dear friend! xo

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  2. Wow! I love it! I'm so hungry right now...

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  3. Boy, those are gorgeous pictures, Kathy. Although I am not Catholic, I still try to be a "good girl" (as, you do, I am sure). I don't what to end up in you-know-where either. I must say that you get extra points for walking away from a hot dog. And, as a kid. Even more so. I've gotten to be a real lentil lover also over the past three years. You grew up with many more cuisine experiences than I did - we were a meat and potatoes family. A very nice Post.

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  4. My parents always went out to dinner on Fridays and left us home with a box of mac and cheese! Next time, I'll add goat cheese to my salad...it looks wonderful!

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  5. Hi Kathy!
    Oh how I remember those eatless Fridays:) I can't say they were my favorite meal of the week unless we were having peppers and eggs, lol...I too love lentils and remember them growing up. I have recently been on a red lentil kick but I do appreciate these lentils too because they hold their shape and make great salads. Funny thing is, I am now once again trying to go meatless on Fridays. I have also vowed to make them way more interesting too, lol...Time will tell:)

    Thanks for sharing, Kathy...

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  6. As usual, you managed to make it look beautiful. Well done.I ate a lot of lentils as a child too, but I didn't really appreciate them until later on life.

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  7. You had me chuckling at your memories. Or should I say "with" you. We observed meatless days as well, but not every Friday. I remember being young and at the ice skating rink where I got a hotdog for lunch. When I told Nana afterward she reminded me I "can't eat meat today !!" and I felt terrible. Now the rules have relaxed a bit :) I did enjoy these lentils a lot. I also realized how well the Doristas have gotten to know each other through this adventure because I was thinking of you as I prepared these ! I did not do the salad version but am absolutely going to try it- not to mention the goat cheese too !

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  8. Kathy, that is such a good looking salad and topping it with some goat cheese that must really be delicious.
    I love reading about some of the older catholic traditions, thank goodness times have changed. I hate to
    miss Sunday mass because I dislike going to confession even more. I guess some things you just don't
    forget.

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  9. Your salad looks delish. We never ate lentils growing up - I first tried lentils when I started work and had them in a café salad.

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  10. Aw dear I really remember I was in a catholic school my first years but the nuns made some day fish and others lentils.
    BTW I love lentils and this look awesome!

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  11. A great lentil salad, Kathy. I love it's simple and quick to prepare, yet so satisfying and good for you.

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  12. Kathy, what a perfectly lovely looking lentil salad - we loved that vinaigrette too with that wonderful walnut oil - a really healthy and very pretty dish to make just about everyone happy! That slightly salty goat cheese goes so well with this salad. Absolutely wonderful presentation with lots of great colors!
    Have a nice weekend,
    Andrea

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  13. Such a beautiful and healthy meal! Loved the Catholic school reminiscence, too! xo

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  14. What a beautiful salad, lentils are my favorite. We try and go meatless several days a week.

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  15. Vatican II never happened in my house. We ate fish or vegetarian on Friday and my mother always said her prays in Latin.

    I didn't think the lentils needed any dressing either. Lucky you finding the du Puy.

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  16. I really need to cook more with lentils. I even have a giant jar of red lentils. Thanks for the suggestion--looks great!

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  17. Nice and comforting meals!!!
    delicious....

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  18. I hated lentils as a kid but not any more. This salad would suit me perfectly.

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  19. Loved your post and trip down memory lane. Your salad looks delicious. I have only had lentils hot.

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  20. Lovely post and thanks for your version of the lentils, lovely salad!

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  21. When I was growing up, we only had to do that on Good Friday, but I think some parishes are getting stricter again. I have a great story about being on a camping trip on Good Friday and what happened to the three of us who were Catholic - I'll have to find an occasion to share it on the blog one day. Love the look of your lentil salad!

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  22. I used to hate lentil. Now I think they're wonderful. Love this delicious sounding version.

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  23. Your lentils look lovely, and thats coming from someone who detests the flavour of lentils :P

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

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  24. Beautiful photos Kathy! Makes me look forward to trying this recipe.

    What a fun story too - leaving that hot dog took a lot of willpower!

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  25. This is a delicious lentil salad Kathy! Very vibrant and healthy!

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  26. Fortunately, we didn't have to go meatless in our house on Fridays - of course, since we never had lentils, I can't imagine what my mom would have fed us if there wasn't meat on the table.

    I hope you and Bill had a lovely weekend in the city.

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