Butternut & Lentil Salad

When you just don’t have the time or the energy to cook, this salad is there to save the day! It’s great as a main dish as well as a side.

Now let me start off by doing a little introduction to this salad, just so you guys can get familiar with each other 🙂 The butternut and red onion becomes deliciously caramelised while roasting away in the oven, and is then served on top of some hearty lentils that have been boiled in veggie stock. To bring it all together, I make a balsamic maple dressing with a bit of a kick, and top it off with fresh rocket,mixed seeds and feta!

(We were so hungry by the time we shot this, I completely forgot to add the reserved dressing, don’t make the same mistake i did, it really ties it all together)

This salad is the perfect balanced meal for your family, and as you can see in the steps below, it really is a quick meal to make and doesn’t require a lot of hands on time in the kitchen.

Butternut & Lentil Salad (serves 4 as a main, or 6 as a side)

Salad:

  • 400 g diced butternut
  • 1 red onion
  • 1/2 cup dried lentils
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 sachet vegetable stock
  • 1/4 cup roasted mixed seeds
  • Rocket
  • Vegan feta

Dressing:

  • 3 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle or smoked paprika
  • Grind of salt and pepper

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 190c. Chop butternut into cubes, and slice red onion into rings. Scatter onto baking tray with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, toss to coat.
  2. Place vegetables in oven, and give pan a shake every 20 mins to ensure even browning. This should take about 45 minutes, but test with a fork for doneness and adjust time accordingly. Take out and allow to cool.
  3. While the vegetables are in the oven, bring the lentils to a boil with vegetable stock, reduce heat to simmer and cook for 25 minutes covered, drain well and set aside.
  4. Once the lentils have cooled slightly, mix the dressing ingredients together in a bowl and pour half the mixture over the lentils (reserve leftover dressing for later) If you have time, let the lentils rest in the refrigerator covered for an hour, this just gives it extra time to absorb that dressing.

Assembly:

In a bowl or on a large platter, add lentils, butternut and red onion. Top with rocket, feta and seeds. Lastly drizzle over the remaining dressing and lightly toss salad.