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Red Lentil Confetti Salad

This is our day to feel proud to be American citizens and wave our flag. Let the parades, the fireworks, the barbecues, the potlucks, the red, white and blue celebrations begin. You know the salad I’m bringing—red lentil confetti salad.

Red Lentil Confetti Salad

Happy 4th of July! Please pause a moment with me to breathe appreciation, to be grateful that 239 years ago our forefathers had the hootz to declare a new nation independent from the British Empire.

Loaded with fragrant fresh herbs, sweet pepper and pungent onion—this hearty red lentil confetti salad has become a favorite repeater at our house. They might be called red lentils, but they cook into pretty pale orange. Put them in a bowl with bits and pieces of dark green, purple and red, marinate everything in red wine vinegar and olive oil dressing, and you’ve got a bright colorful and flavorful confetti salad. It’s so tasty you’ll be taking it to every potluck party the rest of the summer.

Red Lentil Confetti Salad

Here are the Red Lentil Confetti Salad recipe details:

  • Cook nutritious little red lentils slowly and check them often; red lentils fall apart quickly and before you know they can turn into mush. After 5 minutes, and each minute after, take a bite; a lentil should yield to your tooth with texture.
  • In spring and early summer I use garlic scapes in place of fresh garlic. For this salad I sautéed the chopped scapes in a little olive oil while the lentils cooked.
  • Today’s herbal confetti is a mix of several different herbs that have been living well-kept in jars of water in our fridge, cilantro, summer savory, and thyme. If you have just cilantro or parsley, go with it. I just happen to have a stash from the last few weeks of CSA veggies.

Red Lentil Confetti Salad ingredients

  • Red lentil confetti salad keeps well for days. I usually double the recipe and set some aside for lunch, or for spooning over mixed greens for an easy hot summer main dish salad. If the salad is prepared more than a few hours ahead, taste and adjust the seasonings before serving.
  • Adapted from Lentil Salad recipe in May All Be Fed by John Robbins.

**This post has been updated from a Crimson Lentil and Garlic Scape Salad posted in June 2010.

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Red Lentil Confetti Salad
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Red Lentil Confetti Salad
When you put this salad together you will catch yourself sampling to make sure the seasoning is just right. Again and again. This hearty salad is that tasty.
Servings: 6 servings.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup red lentils , picked over and rinsed
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 clove garlic , minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Real Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ cup chopped garlic scapes (1/4-inch), or 2 cloves garlic, minced (see note)
  • ¾ cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/2 red bell pepper , seeded and cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cucumber , peeled and seeds removed, cut into thin slices
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh herbs (e.g. cilantro, parsley, basil, summer savory etc.)
Instructions
  1. Put the lentils with water and bay leaf in a large pot. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and gently cook until the lentils are just tender, 5 to 8 minutes. (see note) Drain and let cool.
  2. Whisk the vinegar and the mustard in a bowl. Stir in the garlic, salt and a generous grind of black pepper. Whisk in the olive oil.
  3. Put the red lentils and garlic scapes (or garlic), red onion, bell pepper, cucumber, and chopped fresh herbs in a salad bowl.
  4. Pour the red wine vinaigrette over the salad. Toss until everything is well coated with the dressing. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more salt and pepper if needed.
  5. Refrigerate at least one hour to allow the flavors to blend. Serve chilled.
Recipe Notes
  • If using garlic scapes in place of fresh garlic, you can sauté the chopped scapes in a little olive oil while the lentils cook or add the garlic scapes without cooking.
  • Cook red lentils slowly and check them often; they fall apart quickly and before you know they can turn into mush. After 5 minutes, and each minute after, take a bite; a lentil should yield to your tooth with texture.
  • If the salad is prepared more than a few hours ahead, taste and adjust the seasonings before serving.

7 comments

  • […] garlic scape recipes: Crimson Lentil and Garlic Scape Salad on Letty’s Kitchen Red Lentils and Garlic Scapes on Letty’s Kitchen Creamy Avocado with […] Reply · 22 June, 2014

  • Patricia

    Happy 4th of July, Recipe looks yummy, We’ll enjoy our good fortune to live in this great country. Thanks for the reminder. Reply · 4 July, 2015

    • Letty

      Thanks Patricia! Reply · 4 July, 2015

  • It even looks like an explosion of festive fireworks. GREG Reply · 7 July, 2015

  • looks terrific – tweeting and pinning it~ Reply · 7 July, 2015

  • […] In honor of the upcoming year of pulses, you might also like this brilliant Red Velvet Beet Soup, and this Red Lentil Confetti Salad. […] Reply · 23 November, 2015

  • […] Red Lentil Confetti Salad by Letty at Letty’s Kitchen […] Reply · 19 April, 2016

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