The Truth Shall Set You Free…It might piss you off first, but it will set you free.

Cookin’ with the Munky: Lentil Salad – A Meal in Itself

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on January 4, 2012

  A Tribute to the Bean

Beans! Beans! Beans! You’re just full of beans!  Time to spill the beans! “It doesn’t take much to see that the problems of three little people doesn’t add up to a hill of beans in this crazy world. Someday you’ll understand that. Now, now… Here’s looking at you kid.” “Take thou also unto thee wheat, and barley, and beans, and lentiles, and millet, and fitches, and put them in one vessel, and make thee bread thereof, according to the number of the days that thou shalt lie upon thy side, three hundred and ninety days shalt thou eat thereof.”

Ok..you see where I am going here.  Now let’s get down to business..first a disclaimer:   unless it is a baking recipe, baking is more science than anything so I do give exact measurements,  for most other recipes I won’t..it is a matter of taste.  I used to get frustrated when I would watch my mom cook and ask her exactly how much is that mom?  She would say..Munky just do it to taste, I would complain, Mom I don’t have any taste, my taste is YOUR taste.  I got over that idea, and so will you.  We will begin this recipe in the spirit of the great Julia Childs…“This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook- try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!”


Brown Lentils Dry – wash and soak them over night, they will swell.  Rinse well, and pour into a big pot of boiling salted water.  Depending on the lentil itself this may take 20 to 30 minutes, periodically check make sure it does not boil dry and to see if it is done.  Do not over cook, you do not want mush, you want a completely cooked the bean, these are not big beans by the way, not like pinto beans for example, they are much smaller, thinner.  When cooked, drain the water off, rinse again and let it sit in a strainer for a bit to get rid of excess water.  If you discover that you have cooked way too many beans, once the water has drained, simply put into a freezer bag and tuck into your freezer for a future salad in minutes.  If you do not drain off the excess water and freeze them, you will end up with a block of ice and icky mushy beans later.

Fresh cilantro chopped – this is a pungent herb so don’t over do it, unless you really like cilantro then knock yourself out.

Fresh parsley chopped – be generous, and besides that it’s good for you.  Did you know parsley is a natural diuretic?

Green Onion chopped – use the green chive like parts and the actual onion – waste not want not.

Diced tomatoes.

Ground Cumin to taste.  Cumin is a wonderful spice..there is evidence of cumin seeds 2,000 BC.  Depending on the grade of spice start out sparingly, you can always add more, but you can’t take it away.

And of course if you hate onions, well then don’t add them..or if you hate cilantro, don’t use it..this is optional cooking, not mandatory.

Combine everything together…and then add the secret ingredient..

Munky’s Magical Elixir

Step 1.

Crushed Garlic – be brave, be bold, there is no such thing as too much garlic in the Munky’s world.  It is a natural antibiotic, and a blood thinner.  It is by the way a true character flaw if you do not like garlic.  There is no hope for you to lead a truly inspired culinary life if you banish garlic from your cooking.

For the sake of argument let’s say 2 Tablespoons, which you are going to then add a heaping teaspoon of salt, mix it all together.   Your eyes should be watering now if you are doing it right.

Step 2.

Fresh squeezed lemon – you can probably use that stuff from a plastic lemon, but I prefer not to know about it ok?

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (yes you could use some other vegetable oil and I really don’t want to know about that at all)  I cannot tell you how much of a difference olive oil makes, not only in the flavour, but also for your health.

The ratio is approximately 1 part lemon juice to 1.25 to 1.5 parts of olive oil.

Add the garlic salt mixture from step one and shake it all up to combine.

Pour over the lentil salad mixture…and gently mix it all up..and taste..you may need more salt, you may need more lemon?

I love serving this over a bed of greens, anything will work, different lettuces,  arugula, spinach..whatever you want..


This salad seems to get better the longer it sits, and will stay perky in the frig for a few days..if you don’t eat it all on the first day.  Of course lettuce does not store well once it is dressed…so don’t try that one.

Bon Appetite!




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