Lentil, Beetroot and Red Onion Salad

A very easy, delicious, colourful, salad, packed with nutrients, beetroot is one of my favourite foods.......

Green Lentil, beetroot and red onion salad

Serves 6 as a starter or side salad

 

INGREDIENTS

9 small beetroot trimmed and washed but leave the skin on

300g puy lentils

1 bunch flat leaf parsley/coriander

1 red onion, chopped into small pieces

250g rindless goats/feta cheese, crumbled

 

DRESSING

¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard

½ teaspoon English mustard powder

2  1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

6 tablespoons olive oil

 

METHOD

    1. Put the beetroot in a pan of water and bring to the boil, simmer for 1 hour or longer depending on size until they are tender. Drain well, then rub off the skin and cut into quarters.
    1. Meanwhile cook the lentils in a pan of boiling water for 20 – 25 minutes, until tender. Drain in a colander, hold under running water until cool, drain again.
    1. To make the dressing, put the mustards and pinch of salt in a bowl and whisk in the vinegar. Once combined slowly whisk in the oil.
    1. Put the lentils in a large bowl and stir in half the dressing then add the parsley or coriander or mix of each and top with the beetroot and onion. Sprinkle the cheese on top with a grind of black pepper. Serve the remaining dressing on the side.

 

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION

 

Beetroot is one of my favourites. It has a sweet, earthy flavour and can either be cooked as above or roasted as a vegetable. It is an excellent source of fibre and anti-oxidants, as well as glutamine which is very healing for the gut.

Beetroot contains Vitamins A, B6, C; folic acid, magnesium, potassium and iron.

Beetroot also contains nitrates which are converted in the mouth to nitrites to help increase blood flow by opening up our blood vessels and increasing oxygen to cells. This is very beneficial for muscles, heart, brain health and our overall energy. The leaves can be lightly steamed, don’t overcook them, they are slightly bitter but eaten at the beginning of a meal prepares the gut for digestion.

 

Red onion is a tasty vegetable, also lovely in roast vegetable dishes. It is a good immune booster due to its anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. It also has anti-inflammatory qualities. It contains quercetin a valuable bioflavenoid useful for scavenging free radicals.

 

Lentils are a very useful store cupboard ingredient. They are high in fibre, are a good form of complex carbohydrate which helps to balance blood sugar thus sustaining energy and concentration. They contain magnesium which supports heart health and acts as a muscle relaxant. Lentils also contain iron, an integral component of haemoglobin which transports oxygen to the cells from the lungs. Iron boosts energy production.

 

 

 

 

 
     


© Ruth Pretty 2011