Maybe it's because summer is on its way out (so long, sayonara and all that) or perhaps I'm just entering a renewed phase of healthy eating (*snort*), but lately I've been craving veggie laden dishes. Beans, corn, beetroot, butternut, tomatoes, zucchini and more tomatoes are the order of the day and I'm just looking for excuses to use them. Or eat them as is. Raw, cooked, roasted, mashed or boiled. Actually scrap the last one, boiled is almost never a winner, is it?
I've even taken to drinking copious amounts of vegetable juices, fruit juices and smoothies - a tall glass of tomato juice is just the thing on a lazy Sunday afternoon, or perhaps you'd be more in favour of a carrot, pineapple and yoghurt smoothie for breakfast alongside your bursting-with-fruit salad? Heck, I'll take 'em all with some extra pomegranate juice to go.
And while I try everything in my power to sate my inner herbavore, TheHusband (between brewing yet another batch of beer) grabs every opportunity to have another braai - it might be one of the last chances for the foreseeable future you know! So of course I indulge him. Which means, I get to indulge myself too. Oh come on, you didn't think I was that kindhearted, did you? Pork chops sizzled on the fire while I quickly rustled up this healthy take on a side-salad. We tossed some corn on the cob (still wrapped in their husks) on the grill as the grand finale and lunch was born. Lovely!
Sundried Tomato, Bean & Lentil Salad
A Creative Pot original
Serves 4 - 6 as side-dish
I recommend using the sundried tomatoes in olive oil for this dish as the squishy softness is just perfect with the crunchy green beans. Plus, as a bonus, you get to replace some of the olive oil in the dressing with the sun dried tomato oil - an absolute eating pleasure.
2 cups cooked lentils
250g green beans, blanched and cut into bite-sized lengths
10 soft sun dried tomato slices, chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
1 - 2 spring onions, coarsely chopped
1. Gently toss together the lentils, beans and dried tomato slices in a medium sized bowl.
2. In a small bowl mix the oil, paprika and lemon juice together to form a dressing, then pour over the lentils. Taste and adjust seasonings, then scatter with spring onions and serve.
To build on the mediteranean flavours present here, try adding a few chopped olives or colourful bellpeppers.