Puy Lentil Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette

By Riki Shore

It takes significant planning and prep time to create Paleo meals every day of the week. If your life is as busy as most, you need a handful of quick recipes that use up leftovers in a creative and delicious way. This one does just that. I’ve written it to use leftover roasted or rotisserie chicken, but this salad combines just as well with leftover lamb or steak.

1 cup Puy (green) lentils
2 cups water
2 sprigs parsley or 1 celery rib with leaves
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons rice wine or champagne vinegar
1 tablespoons dijon mustard
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon capers (optional)
1 tablespoon parsley (optional)
2 cups cold chopped chicken, leftover from roasted or rotisserie chicken

1. Rinse the lentils in a strainer and place in a heavy pot with the parsley or celery rib. Cover with water, bring to a boil, then simmer, covered, 30 – 40 minutes. The lentils should be cooked, but still al dente. Toss the warm lentils with 1 tablespoon of olive oil to moisten.
2. Make the vinaigrette by whisking together the vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper. Add the remaining olive oil and whisk well to emulsify. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary.
3. If using the capers, gently mash them with the side of a heavy knife. If using the parsley, chop it finely.
4. In a medium bowl, combine the lentils, chicken, capers and parsley (if using). Stir well, then toss with the vinaigrette. Serve immediately or refrigerate overnight. Bring to room temperature before serving.

For more delicious paleo-friendly, gluten-free recipes, see Three Squares.