Lentil and fennel salad

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Lentil and fennel salad

Serves 8 1h 15 min
These lentils are brilliant as a warmed up packed lunch with a green salad.


  • good bunch parsley, leaves and stems separated
  • 500g dark green lentils (puy or similar), rinsed and soaked in water for 30 mins
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 tsp salt, plus more as needed
  • 1 small fennel bulb, trimmed
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and finely diced
  • 2 medium red onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 3 tbsp red wine vinegar, plus more as needed
  • handful parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper


Prep time: 30 min
Cooking time: 45 min
  • Step 1

    Tie the parsley stems together with string and place in a large saucepan. Add the lentils, bay leaf, and garlic and cover by 2 inches with cold water.
  • Step 2

    Cover the pan with a tight fitting lid and bring to a boil over medium-high heat; about 10 minutes. Uncover, reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of the salt, stir to combine, and continue to simmer until the lentils are just tender - about another 10 minutes.
  • Step 3

    Meanwhile, finely chop the fennel bulb. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large frying pan and add the chopped fennel, carrots, onions, and a pinch each of salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, for about 10 minutes, until the carrots are al-dente.
  • Step 4

    Taste and season with more salt and pepper as needed. Transfer the mixture to a large heatproof bowl.
  • Step 5

    Carefully remove the parsley stem bundle, bay leaf, and garlic from the lentils and discard. Drain the lentils and transfer to the bowl with the carrot mixture.
  • Step 6

    Add the mustard, vinegar, the remaining olive oil and salt and stir to combine. Taste and re-season with more salt, pepper, and vinegar if needed. Stir in the chopped parsley.
  • Step 7

    Serve warm or at room temperature with the best bread you can find, some shredded lamb, a green salad and, if you can be bothered, an Italian salsa verde.

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