Warm Spinach and Lentil Salad
Active Time: 25 minutes / Cook Time: 20-25 minutes / Total Time: 30-35 minutes, plus overnight soaking of lentils
Makes 2 servings
- 1 ½ cups water, plus more if necessary
- ½ cup dried lentils, preferably Petite French Green, soaked overnight and drained
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, divided, plus more to taste
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 small bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon refined coconut oil
- 1 medium shallot, peeled and cut into rings
- 1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
- 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
- 1 garlic clove, peeled and thinly sliced
- 5 oz. baby spinach
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika, plus more to taste
- 2 tablespoons red wine OR cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Bring water, lentils, ¼ teaspoon salt, thyme, and bay leaf to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until lentils are tender, about 15 minutes. Add more water if the lentils are looking dry before they are tender. Drain lentils and remove bay leaf. Return to the pot and cover to keep warm.
- While the lentils are cooking, heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add shallot, carrot, celery, and ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt and cook, stirring often, until very soft, about 10 minutes. If the vegetables start to take on any color, reduce heat to low and add 2 tablespoons water to slow cooking.
- Stir garlic into onion mixture and cook 1 to 2 minutes, or until very fragrant. Add spinach and using tongs, turn in the vegetable mixture until spinach is just wilted. Remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.
- Add smoked paprika, vinegar, mustard, oil, and ¼ teaspoon pepper to a jar with a lid and shake to emulsify. (You can also add them all to a small bowl and whisk together.)
- Add lentils and dressing to the pan with the vegetables and use tongs to combine ingredients well. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
- Divide salad onto two plates and serve, topped with more ground pepper and parsley, if desired.