Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad is a healthy, tasty salad of lentils, quinoa and asparagus flavored with freshly grated ginger, olive oil and pomegranate red wine vinegar. Toasted pine nuts are sprinkled on top of the finished salad. The original recipe called for mint leaves. I like mint but I also like basil, both of which are growing on our deck. I decided to divide the recipe in half and to add mint leaves to one half and basil leaves to the other half to see which one I liked best. It turns out that I happen to like both the mint and basil versions of this fresh salad recipe! So follow your gut on this one – pun intended!

I would recommend using the blender to prepare this salad dressing to finely distribute the grated ginger – a wire whisk just doesn’t do this very well. Another recommendation is to use any nuts you would like in this recipe as pine nuts, which are specified, have become expensive. Walnuts would probably add some great flavor as well as crunchiness.

Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad Recipe

Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad
Serves 8
A tasty, healthy salad of lentils, quinoa, and asparagus flavored with ginger, olive oil and pomegranate red wine vinegar.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 quart water
  2. 3/4 cup dried green lentils, rinsed
  3. 1/2 cup dried quinoa
  4. 4 ounces fresh asparagus tips cut into 1-inch pieces
  5. 1/2 cup olive oil
  6. 1/4 cup pomegranate red wine vinegar
  7. 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  8. 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  9. 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  10. 1/4 teaspoon dried pepper flakes
  11. 1 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
  12. 2 ounces pine nuts, toasted
  13. 6 cups mixed salad greens
Instructions
  1. Bring water to a boil over high heat in a medium saucepan. Add lentils, reduce heat, cover and simmer 17 minutes.
  2. Add quinoa, cover and cook 7 minutes.
  3. Add asparagus and cook 2 minutes or until asparagus is tender crisp.
  4. Drain and run under cold water to cool.
  5. Shake off excess water.
  6. Meanwhile, combine oil, vinegar, ginger, salt, black pepper and pepper flakes in a medium bowl.
  7. Add the lentil mixture, mint and pine nuts to the oil mixture and toss, until well coated.
  8. Serve over salad greens.
Notes
  1. Chopped fresh basil leaves works well in this salad in place of the mint leaves for a different twist on the original!
Adapted from Pompeian
Adapted from Pompeian
SILVER FOODIE http://www.silverfoodie.com/

Exquisite Ginger

Ginger is one of my favorite spices! Some people call it gingerroot. When fresh it’s gnarly so it needs to be peeled before using. (Ginger is technically a rhizome of the ginger plant.) Ginger is aromatic, pungent and sweet with a touch of musty/earthy undertones. Ginger is considered by many to be an aid to digestion – remember drinking a gingerale when your tummy was upset? Our fall-winter holiday season wouldn’t be the same without gingerbread and the many items that ginger lends its flavor to, such as pumpkin pie.

For those over 60 with a diminished sense of taste, spices are important to add to food to give it more taste. Spices are what I refer to as “flavor intensifiers” and add another layer of flavor to our food.

A Little About Lentils


Lentils are legumes which are related to beans and peanuts. They are technically seeds that are harvested from pods. Lentils can add a great deal of color to a dish as they come in a variety of colors – tan, green, red, orange, golden and black. Unlike dried beans, lentils do not require pre-soaking overnight before cooking. Be sure to rinse them and inspect them for any debris that may have gotten mixed in with the lentils. Lentils have the capability of absorbing flavors with which they are combined. Used all over the world, lentils are high in fiber, iron and Vitamin B12 and may help lower cholesterol. Lentils are often used as meat substitutes due to their protein content.

Versatile Quinoa

Quinoa is a grain grown for its edible seeds. Containing essential amino acids, quinoa also is high in fiber, calcium, phosphorus, iron and B vitamins. Quinoa is gluten-free and may be cooked and used just like rice. Quinoa has a low glycemic index and contains minerals and antioxidants. Quinoa imparts a mild, nutty flavor to dishes in which it is an ingredient. If you enjoy quinoa, you may like another Silver Foodie recipe Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers.

Parting Comments

What a great salad with so many healthy ingredients!

Add your own individual touch to this salad by including your favorite ingredients to the mix!

Remember to Savor the Flavor!

Janet

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Comments

Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad — 41 Comments

  1. Hi Meg, Thanks for your kind comments and visit! Hope you enjoy this recipe – fresh ginger is just the best! Blessings, Janet

  2. Janet, what a beautiful salad and healthy! I think I need to try this! Thanks for sharing! Pam @ Everyday Living

  3. Hi Pam, Thanks for the encouraging comments! Hope you enjoy this salad! Have a great week! Blessings, Janet

  4. Such an intriguing and delicious-sounding mix of flavors! I love lentils and quinoa, so I have to try this!

  5. I lived in Washington for 4 years and they grew lentils there. We ate a lot of lentils when we lived there. I hope to see you at Family Joy Blog Link Up Party this week. http://thinking-outside-the-pot.com/?p=2762

  6. I will be honest at first I didn’t think I would like something like this but after reading the ingredients it sounds like an interesting mix of flavors. The nuttiness of quinoa and pine nuts, with the bright mint and ginger flavors. You have opened my eyes. Thanks for sharing this.

  7. Hi Charlene, Did you get tired of lentils after eating them so much? I like them. Thanks for hosting Family Joy Blog Link Up Party! See you this week! Blessings, Janet

  8. Hi Melissa, Hope you like this mix of flavors! I tend to like anything with fresh ginger. Thanks for your nice comments and visit! Blessings, Janet

  9. I’m not a big quinoa fan, but I’ll try anything with ginger in it! Thanks for joining the What’s for dinner link up!

  10. Oh, this looks super yummy! Can’t wait to give this a try. Thank you for linking up with us at Dishing It & Digging It ?

  11. Hi Helen, I love ginger, too! You could substitute rice for the quinoa. Thanks for stopping by! Blessings, Janet

  12. Hi Angie, Glad you think this would be good! I love the asparagus in this. Hope you enjoy it! Blessings, Janet

  13. Such a healthy dish. I would have to substitute the lentils as I’m allergic to them. I could use other beans or leave out entirely.

  14. Hi Michelle, Sorry to hear about your allergies but something like chickpeas or other beans might be tasty in place of the lentils. Thanks for hosting Party at My Place! Blessings, Janet

  15. This sounds so good. I LOVE everything about this dish! Thanks for sharing!! YUM!

  16. Hi Christine, Thanks for your nice comments and for stopping by! Hope you enjoy this recipe! Blessings, Janet

  17. Your Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad looks fantastic! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday and have a great weekend!
    Miz Helen

  18. Hi Miz Helen, Hope you’re staying cool in your neck of the woods! Thanks for hosting Full Plate Thursday! Blessings, Janet

  19. I love the freshness of your salad. Lots of delicious and healthy ingredients. Thanks for sharing with Fiesta Friday ?

  20. SO healthy and SO good for a hot summer day! This looks absolutely amazing, in fact I really want to try this tomorrow, I think I have everything at home!

  21. Hi Janet, We both brought quinoa salads to Fiesta Friday! ? Yours looks so delicious and flavorful. I love that it has pine nuts in it. I had not realized the extent of the health benefits to quinoa until I looked it up this week. I am going to start incorporating it into our diet more. This salad would be a good way to do that. I enjoyed looking at your blog and look forward to seeing more of your posts!

  22. Hi Judi, Glad you liked this salad! Thanks for stopping by and leaving such nice comments! Blessings, Janet

  23. Hi Katrin, Hope you had all the ingredients so you could try this recipe! Thanks for your nice comments and for stopping by! Blessings, Janet

  24. Hi Shari, Great minds think alike! ? Thanks so much for looking at my blog and for stopping by to leave such nice comments! Blessings, Janet

  25. This looks filling and nutritious. Will be pinning. Come link up at Let’s Get Real Friday.

  26. Janet, what a beautiful and healthy salad. I wouldn’t have thought of ginger, basil and mint!

    Thanks for sharing with us this week at Throwback Thursday! And for the visits! ?

    Mollie

  27. Hi Karen, Thanks for your comments and pinning this recipe! Thanks also for hosting Let’s Get Real Friday – see you there! Blessings, Janet

  28. Hi Mollie, I don’t make it with both basil and mint but with one or the other. (Hope that wasn’t confusing!) Thanks for hosting Throwback Thursday! Hope you’re enjoying Chance! Blessings, Janet

  29. Ginger is so delicious and I like the sound of lentils and quinoa together in a salad! Thank you for bringing this to Fiesta Friday ?

  30. I’ve been eating primarily vegetarian over the past month – this is a perfect recipe for me! Thanks so much for sharing with us at You Link it We Make It. We hope you?ll come back and link up with us again! ? Kim @ knockitoffkim.com

  31. Hi Kim, Thanks for your kind comments and for hosting You Link It We Make It! I linked up earlier today. Have a great week! Blessings, Janet

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