Lentil Salad with Shallots
1 cup french lentils
5 cups water
1 dried bay leaf (or I've substituted this for a piece of bacon)
1 tbsp plus 2 tsp red wine vinegar
1 1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup minced shallots
1/3 cup carrots, minced
2 tbsp chopped chives and plus extra for garnish (optional)
Salt and fresh pepper
Pick over lentils, discarding any stones, and rinse. Place in a medium saucepan with water and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and gently simmer, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes, until lentils are tender (Do not overcook or lentils will be mushy). Drain and add 2 tsp of red wine vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside to cool.
For the vinaigrette, combine mustard and remaining red wine vinegar in a small bowl. In a slow, steady stream, add olive oil and whisk constantly until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper.
In a bowl, combine lentils, chives, shallots, carrots and vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with chopped chives and serve at room temperature.
Note: This could be served as a salad or a side dish or for a picnic. We also love to serve it with duck confit. It's served at room temp and easy to transport for a pot luck! Taste the lentils often to make sure they are not getting overcooked.
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