Lentil Quinoa Salad
Lentil Quinoa Salad with Tahini Dressing
¾ cups French lentils
1 cup quinoa, rinsed in a fine-mesh colander
2 cups water or vegetable broth
¼ cup olive oil
3 to 4 tablespoons lemon juice, to taste (from about 2 lemons)
2 tablespoons tahini
1 large clove garlic, pressed or minced
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
1 bunch radishes, scrubbed and quartered
1 small zucchini, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped chives
Rinse the lentils and place in a medium saucepan. Cover with an inch or two of water and add a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and keep at a low boil for 20-22 minutes until cooked through. Drain and rinse, and set aside.
Meanwhile, combine the rinsed quinoa and the water or broth in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then cover and decrease the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook until the quinoa has absorbed all of the liquid, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, insert a clean towel or paper towel under the lid, and let the quinoa rest for 5 minutes, which gives it time to fluff up without any condensation falling back in to the pan.
In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, 3 tablespoons lemon juice, tahini, garlic, salt and several twists of freshly ground pepper. Taste, and add up to 1 more tablespoon of lemon juice and/or more pepper, if desired.
Place the quinoa in a large bowl. Add the lentils, parsley, tomatoes, carrots, radishes, zucchini and chives. Drizzle the dressing over the salad, and toss to combine. Serve immediately, or let it cool and refrigerate for later. This salad is a great make-it-ahead dish for work week lunches or a fun picnic.