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Author Notes: This salad is a staple in my family. I use different vegetable at times. I have added roasted nuts. —Gerlinde de Broekert
- 1 cup french lentils
- 3 or more cups water
- 3 sprigs small sprigs of thyme
- 2 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 carrot, peeled
- 3/4 cup carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 celery rib , diced
- 8 ounces soft goat cheese
- ½ -1 teaspoons freshly ground pepper to taste
- coarse sea salt to sprinkle over the salad
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
- ¼ cups walnut oil
- ¼ cups chopped chives
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
- 1 peeled and minced shallot
- Rinse the lentils well in a sieve under running water and put them with the thyme, garlic, bay leaves, the carrot, water and 1 tsp of salt in a saucepan. Add additional water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, stirring often.
- Decrease the heat to simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Add the diced carrots and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes. Do not overcook, as the lentils should still have a light crunch.
- While the lentils are cooking, make the dressing . Whisk together the mustard and vinegar in a bowl. Whisk in the oil to emulsify. Add the shallots and fresh tarragon.
- Drain the lentils well, discarding the thyme branches, the garlic, the whole carrot and the bay leaves. Combine the dressing with the warm lentils , mixing well, and let it cool to room temperature. Stir occasionally.
- When ready to serve, add the chives and the celery. Add additional vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Add the goat cheese and sprinkle with coarse French sea salt.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe for Lettuce-Free Salad