Pick over the lentils, removing any grit or misshapen lentils, then rinse well. In a saucepan over high heat, combine the water and ½ teaspoon of salt and bring to a boil. Add the lentils, and reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until the lentils are tender but still hold their shape, 20- 25 minutes. Be careful not to overcook. Remove from the heat and drain well. Let cool to room temperature.
In a bowl, stir together the olive oil, vinegar, ½ teaspoon pepper, shallot, 2 tablespoons of the basil, and all but one-fourth of the bacon. Add the lentils and mix well.
If serving the lentils on a platter, spoon the lentils first. Then arrange the mozzarella around the edges of the platter. Sprinkle the remaining minced and whole basil leaves and the bacon over the lentils, and serve.