Mediterranean Lentil Pasta Salad with Goat Cheese

IMG_0408

Another wonderful salad for a summer’s day.  I love one bowl meals and this salad includes all the components to meet my needs:  Green lentils and goat cheese for protein, pasta for carbs, and lots of colourful vegetables.

For those of you who would like to include more vegetarian meals into your diet, 2016 has been deemed the International Year of the Pulse.  Examples of pulses are dried peas and beans, lentils, and chickpeas. And there are so many varieties available that you wouldn’t need to reuse a pulse for a meal for a long while!   Pulses are high in protein and fibre and a bunch of vitamins. And they are Canadian grown, mainly in Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta.  Here are two great sources of information, downloads, and recipes at:

  1. Pulse Canada (www.pulsecanada.com)
  2. Lentils Canada (www.lentils.ca)

The recipe I want to share with you is from the Lentils Canada website – Mediterranean Lentil Pasta Salad. I followed it fairly closely except I substituted goat cheese for the feta.  Personally I like the taste of goat cheese better, but if you prefer feta, go for it!

You can use canned green lentils or prepare your own from dried.  I liked the diverse colours of textures of mixed cherry/grape tomatoes, a sweet red pepper, salty pitted Kalamata olives, bottled artichoke hearts and English cucumber.

IMG_0400I used corkscrew shaped pasta – cavatappi.  Use any small pasta such as penne or rotini.IMG_0404All the veggies are chopped and mixed with the lentils while the pasta cooks.IMG_0401

The dressing is easy to prepare in a mason jar and shaken to mix. A simple vinaigrette of olive oil, red wine vinegar, crushed garlic, dried oregano, sugar, salt and pepper.IMG_0403

Lucky me, I have fresh basil plants on my back porch.  A handful of basil leaves and a cup of goat cheese and we are ready to assemble.

A beautiful salad to bring to the table for lunch or dinner.  IMG_0408

Mediterranean Lentil Pasta Salad with Goat Cheese


derived from the Lentils Canada wonderful website, full of information and recipes

Ingredients

1/2 lb. uncooked small pasta, such as penne, rotini or macaroni
2 cups cooked green lentils
I cup cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
1 red sweet pepper, diced
1/2 English cucumber, diced
1 cup quartered canned or bottled artichoke hearts
1/2 cup sliced Kalamata olives

1 cup goat cheese, crumbled
1 big handful of fresh basil, finely sliced

Dressing

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Directions

  1. Bring a medium saucepan of water to boil and cook pasta until al dente. Drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together cooked pasta, lentils, tomatoes, red pepper, cucumber, artichokes, and olives.
  3. In a mason jar, add olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, oregano, sugar, salt, and pepper, and shake well. Pour dressing over the salad and stir to combine.
  4. Stir in feta cheese and basil. Mix well and season to taste with more salt and pepper, if needed.

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2 comments

  1. Pretty! Might be good with Israeli couscous too! Thanks.

    1. Brilliant suggestion!

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