Week two of the our CSA box came at just the right time. We were having a brief lull in our tomatoes and our other vegetables were just getting started. This box consisted of several heirloom tomatoes, one honey loup, zucchinis, yellow squash, a much appreciated Stockton yellow onion, eggplant, the cutest tiniest super sweet 100 cherry tomatoes, and peaches.
We get our box on Wednesday and try to use it as much of as we can in next couple of days. We used most of these during a great barbecue. We did a beer can chicken, grilled the zucchini and yellow squash, and made a lentil salad using the onion and tomatoes.
We used those adorable cherry tomatoes in the lentil salad. Am I the only one who has a soft spot for those little baskets that they came in? I have faint memories of being really young and using them with my Fisher Price Little People. This recipe is great for barbecues and picnics. There is a little prep work involved but most of it can be done the night before. The trick is to not let the lentils get to mushy. If you are gardener this is a good way to utilize your harvest. I like to play with this dish and use what I have available. Those little tiny tomatoes were perfect. However, in the past I have also just diced up my larger tomatoes. You can also substitute the sunflower seeds for pine nuts if your prefer.
1 pound dried lentils cleaned and washed
1 whole onion peeled
2 carrots quartered
2 teaspoons of chopped fresh oregano
2 cloves of garlic
1 whole bay leaf
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup cooked, chilled white or wild rice
2 cups of cherry tomatoes (or larger tomatoes diced)
2/3 cup toasted sunflowers (unsalted)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/2 cup scallions
1 jalapeno chile
1. In a large pot, cover the lentils with water.
2. Place the onion, carrots, oregano, garlic, and bay leaf.
3. Bring to a boil and then lower temperature so it simmers then cover.
4. Simmer for about 30 minutes, checking occasionally to ensure that the lentils don’t become mushy.
5. Drain thoroughly and remove the onion, garlic, carrots and bay leaf.
6. Put the lentils in a big bowl and put aside.
7. Whisk the olive oil and vinegar together. Pour and mix with the lentils. Let chill for an hour.
This can be done over night. I prefer to do the last steps right before serving to enhance the flavors of the cilantro, feta, and tomatoes.
8. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Cover and chill until ready to eat.
The peaches were little too ripe for our tastes so rather than waste them we pureed them with melon and added champagne.
It’s very simple but perfect for a warm summer evening.
Scoop out 1/2 the melon puree in blender. Add the peaches.
Serve in chilled glasses and add a floater of sparkling wine. Top with a sprig of mint.