Recipe – Puy lentil salad

Another great recipe from our cook book to keep you busy over the bank holiday weekend, perfect for a bank holiday Sunday BBQ (weather permitting).  Enjoy!

 Puy lentil salad with roast vegetables

 Yes, yes, we know, lentil salad may seem a bit clichéd, but this is so tangy and moreish we couldn’t possibly think of leaving it out. It’s great either warm or cold and, if you don’t mind a bit of dairy, works brilliantly with goats’ cheese too. You can substitute anything you like for the vegetables here – just try to stick to veggies that will hold their shape when mixed together with the lentils.

serves 6-8

 200g (7oz) Puy lentils

1 red onion, very finely diced

80ml (3fl oz) olive oil

80ml (3fl oz) balsamic vinegar

1 red chilli, trimmed and chopped

3 garlic cloves, chopped

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

3 tablespoons tomato purée

1 tablespoon fennel seeds, toasted and lightly crushed

1 bunch of flat leaf parsley leaves

75g (3oz) baby spinach leaves, red chard leaves or bull’s blood leaves


 For the roasted vegetables

 olive oil

300g (10oz) pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled and cut into 2cm (1-inch) thick wedges

1/2 fennel bulb, trimmed and cut into 1cm (1/2-inch) thick wedges

150g (5oz) cherry tomatoes

1 courgette, cut into 1cm (1/2-inch) thick wedges

2 red or yellow peppers, cored, deseeded and cut into 1-cm-(1/2-inch) thick wedges


Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/Gas Mark 6. Bring a saucepan of salted water to a boil and add the lentils. Lower the heat and simmer for 15–20 minutes until tender. Drain and put in a large salad bowl.

 Put the onion, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, chilli, garlic, sugar, tomato purée and crushed fennel seeds in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook gently, stirring frequently, for 4–5 minutes until the sugar has dissolved. Spoon the warm dressing over the lentils and leave to cool.

 For the roasted vegetables, drizzle a little oil on to the base of a roasting tin. Add the pumpkin or squash pieces, season with salt and mix together thoroughly. Roast for 10 minutes. Toss the fennel and whole tomatoes in a little oil, add to the tin and roast for another 10 minutes. Finally, toss the courgettes and peppers in a little oil, add to the tin and roast for a further 10 minutes. By now the vegetables should all be tender and cooked through. Set aside to cool slightly.

Roughly chop the parsley and add to the salad bowl along with the salad leaves and roasted vegetables.

Mix everything together well and serve.