For this lentil salad, I have added chickpeas to the green lentils along with an abundance of herbs that just make the dish explode in your mouth. Then I have tossed in tomatoes, black olives and feta cheese to make it even more irresistible. Not only is this lentil salad packed with flavor, but the splendid colors make it an inviting dish and great for any dinner party.
While I like to serve this divine lentil salad as a side dish, it would definitely work as a main course for vegetarians and anyone looking for a new idea for meatless Mondays.
I made this dish using the Instant Pot® electric multi-cooker so I can take advantage of both the pressure cooking and slow cooking functions all in one pot. However, you can make it just as easily in any multi-cooker. If you want to make it only in a slow cooker, buy canned chickpeas and then you can skip then pressure cooking steps altogether. All you need to do is get that slow cooker humming and you will have yourself a mouthwatering dish.
- 1 1/2 cups dried chickpeas rinsed
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 tsp chopped fresh parsley
- 3 cups water
- 5 tbsp virgin olive oil divided
- 1 cup dried French green lentils Puy
- 1 tsp herbes de Provence
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 3/4 cups ready-to-use vegetable broth
- 4 tbsp dry white wine divided
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint
- 12 oz cherry tomatoes quartered
- 1/4 cup chopped black olives
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
- In the inner pot, combine chickpeas, thyme, parsley, water and 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil, stirring well.
- Place the pot inside the cooker housing, close and lock the lid and turn the steam release handle to Sealing. Press Manual; the indicator will read “High Pressure.” Use the + button to increase the time on the display to 38 minutes.
- When the timer beeps, press Cancel. Let stand, covered, until the float valve drops down. Turn the steam release handle to Venting and remove the lid. The chickpeas should be tender. (If more cooking is needed, cover the pot and press Sauté. Cook, stirring, for 3 to 5 minutes or until tender.) Drain and rinse chickpeas and set aside. Rinse and dry inner pot.
- In the inner pot, combine chickpeas, lentils, herbes de Provence, salt, broth and 1 tbsp (15 mL) wine. Place the pot inside the cooker housing, close and lock the lid and turn the steam release handle to Venting. Press Slow Cook; the indicator will read “Normal.” Press Adjust twice to change the heat level to “Less.” Press – to decrease the time on the display to 3:00.
- When the timer beeps, remove the lid and check to make sure the lentils are firm-tender. (If more cooking is needed, reset the slow cooker to “More” for 15 minutes.) Press Cancel.
- In a small bowl, whisk together garlic, mint and the remaining wine. Gradually whisk in the remaining oil until emulsified. Drizzle over mixture in pot. Gently stir in tomatoes and olives.
- Transfer salad to a serving dish and garnish with feta.