May 1, 2011

Mango Lentil Salad with Feta

On a recent trip to Costco, my first in a very long time, I was dazzled by a crate of one dozen mangos.  Yes, 12 greenish-pinkish fragrant mangos, just nearing their ripeness.  Nirvana in a cardboard box!  Of course, after I got home and the warehouse daze wore off, I realized that I have 12 mangos that need to be eaten very quickly.  Yikes!  Plato was right when he said that necessity is the mother of invention.  Challenged with 12 mangos all nearing their peak at the same time, I’ve sliced mangos into sauerkraut, served mangos with sausages… and was inspired today by my sister-in-law.

My sister-in-law is an ardent fan of lentils.  Lentil soup is one of her signature dishes (and I hope one day she’ll agree to guest-blog about it).  A few months ago I followed her lead and purchased a mountain of lentil beans, but I didn’t really feel inspired to use them until today.  Scanning the pantry closet, faced with the challenge of using yet another mango, my eyes fell upon the little brown beans.  Thrown together with a tasty but not too salty feta cheese, the sweetness of the mango balances nicely against the neutral background of the lentils.  This salad is easy and fast to make, and serves as a delicious side dish or main course.

Mango Lentil Salad with Feta
1 large mango, peeled and cut into large chunks
15.5 oz can lentils, rinsed and drained -or- 1¾ cups lentils cooked and cooled
½ small red onion, diced
½ tsp olive oil
½ tsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbs cilantro, chopped
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp ground cumin
sea salt, to taste

In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, cilantro, cayenne and cumin.  In a large bowl combine the chopped mango, lentils and red onion.  Toss the dressing into the lentil mixture.  Sprinkle with additional chopped cilantro and sea salt.  Serve room temperature or chilled -- and enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. LENTILS!!!! Can't wait to try this and I'm sure I can think of one other person who's going to enjoy this one :)


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