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    Marinated Lentil Salad with Peppers and Artichoke Hearts

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    Marinated Lentil Salad with Peppers and Artichoke Hearts

    This is a robust salad, ideal for packed lunches, that can be varied according to what you have in the fridge. Try adding diced goat's cheese, ham, or grilled, marinated aubergine. It is worth using a really good extra virgin olive oil for this.

    • Preparation time: 20 minutes
    • Cooking time: 30 minutes
    • Total time: 50 minutes 50 minutes

    Serves: 2


    • 100g puy lentils
    • 1 bay leaf and 4 stems lemon thyme, tied together with a few parsley stems
    • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
    • 1 shallot, finely diced
    • ½ carrot, peeled and finely diced
    • 1 celery stick (from the heart), finely diced
    • ½ red pepper, halved and seeded
    • 1 small courgette, trimmed and sliced lengthways
    • 6½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 4-6 drained canned artichoke hearts
    • 2 tbsp sherry vinegar
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • A few small basil leaves (optional)


    1. Preheat the grill to high and, at the same time, preheat an oven-top griddle pan over a medium heat. Then wash the lentils and place in a saucepan with the herbs and one whole clove of garlic. Cover with 300ml water. Bring up to the boil and cook over a moderate heat while you prepare the shallot, carrot and celery. Stir these vegetables into the lentils, and reduce the heat to low. Simmer gently for 20 minutes, stirring regularly, particularly as the water evaporates. At the end of cooking, the lentils should be dry and tender, not soggy. Remove the herbs and garlic.
    2. Meanwhile, place the pepper, skin side up, under the grill and cook until the skin has wrinkled and blackened. Remove to a small bowl and cover.
    3. Mix the courgette slices in ½ tbsp olive oil and lightly season. Arrange in your griddle pan and cook lightly so they have golden griddle lines. Turn and repeat the process on the other side, then remove from the heat when they are barely cooked. Allow to cool.
    4. Take the artichoke hearts and very gently squeeze out some of the excess water, before patting dry with kitchen paper. Cut in half and place in a mixing bowl. Cut the courgettes into easy-to-eat lengths and add to the bowl with the artichoke hearts. Peel the red pepper, cut into diamonds and add to the bowl too.
    5. Finely chop the remaining garlic clove and place in a small bowl with the vinegar and 6 tbsp olive oil. Season to taste.
    6. Tip the lentils into a mixing bowl. Toss in the vinaigrette, while they are hot. Adjust the seasoning to taste. Finally, mix in the other vegetables. Once cool, cover and refrigerate until needed. When you are ready to pack up your lunch, re-mix, adding a few ripped basil leaves if you wish.

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