Food / 18.05.2016

Super salads: green lentil and caramelised pear salad recipe

By Francesca Specter
A truly delicious combination

lentil salad meta

Looking to experiment with new flavours and textures this National Vegetarian Week? Try this green lentil, caramelised pear and sherry salad recipe from Whole Food From The Ground Up by Jude Blereau (Murdoch Books, £16.99; released 14 July 2016).

This tangy salad is perfect served on its own as a side dish and also tastes great when complemented with a topping of crumbled goats cheese to offset any sweetness. Its rainbow of colours makes it a showstopper salad to put on the table, while the green lentils add a fortifying protein hit. Here’s the easy-to-follow recipe:

Serves 4, as a light meal

2 pears
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
60ml sherry vinegar
2 tbsp sherry
50g rocket leaves or mustard greens (or both, as used here)
225g cooked green lentils, drained
40-75g hazelnuts, roasted, skins rubbed off, roughly chopped
Hazelnut oil for drizzling (optional)

1 Cut the pears into eighths, and remove and discard the cores.
2 Place the olive oil, 2 tbsp sherry vinegar and the sherry in a small frying pan no larger than 20cm (8in). This size pan will give more depth of liquid (and thus more flavour) to the pears, and contribute to less evaporation. Toss the pears through the liquid, place over medium heat and bring to a gentle boil.
3 Cook for 15-20 mins, turning the pears every now and then. At the end of this time, there should be about 2 tbsp of liquid left in the pan. If it looks like there is more, increase the heat slightly and continue to cook until it has reduced. Remove the pears and set aside on a plate.
4 Add the remaining tbsp of sherry vinegar to the pan and stir – this is now your dressing. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
5 To put the salad together, arrange the rocket leaves on a serving platter and spoon the cooked lentils over the top. Using your fingers, gently toss together. Place the cooked pears over the lentils and scatter over the hazelnuts. Gently pour the cooled dressing over the salad and drizzle with a little hazelnut oil, if using, and serve.

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Super salads: green lentil and caramelised pear salad recipe
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