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This is a very good, refreshing salad that goes well with Greek or Moroccan marinated chicken, beef, lamb or whatever suits your fancy! If you haven’t used orzo, it’s a rice-shaped pasta & is readily available. As for the lentils you can use regular green or brown ones or du Puy lentils or if you are really lucky the lentils from Castelluccio in Umbria, Italy. I always end up hauling bags of them home from our trips because they seem impossible to find in Vancouver.
¾ cup lentils (picked over, checking for bits of debris)
1 cup orzo.
1/3 cup EVO
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 clove garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley, either flat-leaf or curly
1 Tbsp. fresh oregano or 1 tsp. dried
¼ tsp salt & freshly ground black pepper
½ English cucumber, diced
2 tomatoes, seeded & diced or an equal amount of cherry tomatoes (my vote is cherry tomatoes)
¼ of a red onion, diced
4 oz. feta cheese, crumbled (Dodonis if you can find it)
(Opt.) lettuce leaves
In a saucepan, bring 4 cups water to a boil; add the lentils; cover & cook over medium heat, checking after 20 minutes, until tender but not mushy. Drain in a sieve & cool under cold water; drain & place in a large bowl. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a separate saucepan of boiling, salted water, cook orzo for about 8 minutes or until tender but firm. Drain in a sieve & cool under cold water; drain & add orzo to the drained lentils.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together EVO, lemon juice, garlic, 2 Tbsp. of the parsley, oregano, salt & pepper; stir into lentil-orzo mixture. Add cucumber, tomatoes, onion & feta; stir to combine.
Line a serving platter with lettuce (if using) Mound salad in centre; garnish with remaining parsley. Serve immediately.