Vegan Mushroom, Lemon & Lentil Salad with Arugula

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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So – I saw this photo above on Pinterest & became obsessed.  The original recipe can be found at Delicious Everyday.  I was drawn to it because I love every ingredient in it but also because the photo was so beautiful.  It can be very difficult to photograph dark food in a way that looks appetizing and I think Delicious Everyday did a far better job than I did with capturing the beauty of this recipe.  What none of our photos convey is the simplicity & over-the-top deliciousness of this salad!!!  It comes together in just the time it takes to cook the lentils & it might be the best combination of flavors I have every experienced.  Seriously.  An outrage!  But – if you don’t like mushrooms or arugula – you are SOL.  These top my list of favorite ingredients so I was in heaven.  I used French lentils but any lentils will likely do – just do not overcook them.

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Mushroom, Lemon & Lentil Salad with Arugula

Serves 2

Ingredients
2 cups water (I added a truffle bouillon cube to the water.  Any vegetable stock would work.)
2 tbs olive oil
10 oz  mix of button and portobello mushrooms, sliced (I used 8 oz of shitake – because that is what I had and they were small so I did not slice them.)
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
¼ tsp chili flakes, or more to taste (I used 1 TBS)
1 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs good quality extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and pepper, to taste
2 tbsp flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
½ cup arugula (I used 1 packed cup)
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DIRECTIONS
  1. Begin by cooking the lentils. Place the lentils and water (or stock) in a saucepan and bring to a boil before reducing to a simmer. Simmer for 25 minutes or until the lentils are tender (the package might give you more specific directions but shoot for JUST cooked & not overcooked). Drain and set aside to cool.
  2. Place a large frying pan over a high heat and add 2 tsp of olive oil. When the pan has come to heat add the mushrooms. Leave for 1 to 2 minutes before stirring. The mushrooms should be lightly golden. Cook for a further minute before removing from the pan. Reduce the heat to medium low and return the mushrooms to the pan and add the garlic and chili flakes and cook for 2 minutes, or until the garlic is fragrant, but not browned as it will taste bitter. Set aside to cool.
  3. Toss the lentils, mushroom and garlic together along with the lemon juice and the extra virgin olive oil. Season to taste and add the parsley and rocket just as you’re serving.
Notes
Don’t slice the mushrooms too thinly (I did not slice mine at all). You want them to have a bit of substance and also you don’t want them to dry out when they are cooked over a high heat.
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