Ivory Lentil Mediterranean Salad

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The Stein Eriksen lodge is a beautiful hotel in Deer Valley, Utah. The namesake is the gold medalist Stein Eriksen, a downhill skier from Norway.

The hotel has such a wonderful Norwegian ambiance with its unique furniture, textiles, and design. We fell in love with the hotel itself, but best of all was discovering brunch at the hotel’s restaurant, the Glitretind.


We’ve been going back as often as we can – just for brunch. We’ve taken our children there, children with friends, then children with husbands, then grand children. The restaurant is family oriented, and definitely skier-oriented during ski season, but still maintains high-end, high-quality food in a cozy, European-style setting. The view from the Glitretind is also stunning, no matter what time of year.

Recently we took my mother there for brunch on her 91st birthday. And, as always, it was a perfect experience, including a surprise treat for my mother. And let me tell you, this brunch is a buffet. I’ve never been a buffet fan. Somehow, the Glitretind pulls buffet off well.

So, while brunching at the Glitretind with the birthday girl, and perusing the salads, one caught my attention. It was an ivory lentil salad. I’m familiar with tan, brown, green, and black lentils… but ivory?!! I just had to have it. And the salad was wonderful.

So I went to my favorite online grocery store, Amazon, and I found ivory lentils sold by Barry Farms, which is a company that sells high-quality grains and beans. Turns out ivory lentils are the insides of black beans!

This is my version of a Mediterranean salad using ivory lentils, with roasted vegetables and some extra goodies, all tossed in a creamy dressing.

Ivory Lentil Mediterranean Salad

16 ounces ivory lentils, pre-soaked for 4-5 hours

1 large purple onion, coarsely chopped
1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt, pepper

1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
Juice of 1 small lemon
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon tomato paste or a few sun-dried tomato halves
1 tablespoon agave syrup
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic
Salt

Canned artichoke bottoms or hearts, quartered
Sun-dried tomatoes, julienned
Kalamata olives, sliced

Turn the oven to 400 degrees F, or to a high roasting position.

While the oven is heating, start the lentils cooking using water or vegetable broth. This step took me 20 minutes with the pre-soaked lentils.


Rinse gently and set aside to cool.

Toss the onions and bell peppers in a bowl and toss with the oil, salt, and pepper.

Pour the vegetables into a roasting pan, and when the oven is at temperature, roast the vegetables until nicely charred, about 20-25 minutes.

Turn off the oven, let the vegetables cool.

Place the slightly warm lentils in a large bowl along with the roasted vegetables and any remaining olive oil in the pan.

Add the quartered artichoke bottoms. I am in love with this product.

Meanwhile, prepare the dressing by combining all of the ingredients in a blender. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Stir in about 1/3 of the vinaigrette and gently combine.


To serve, place the salad in a shallow serving dish.

Top with the sun-dried tomatoes and olive slices.

If desired, drizzle on a little more dressing.

So many ingredients could be included in this salad, like feta cheese for example. But I really liked the simplicity of what I created, which was inspired by the salad I enjoyed at brunch.

I will definitely purchase ivory lentils again, mostly because they’re so pretty. They don’t have the same flavor as Le Puy, which is my favorite lentil variety, but then, they’re really not lentils.

Horseradish

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If you’ve never worked with fresh horseradish before, it’s really something you should try. If you love horseradish.

It isn’t much different than working with ginger. They’re both roots, and both must be peeled. Both should be firm, not mushy when you purchase them.

Horseradish is a bit woodier and much drier.

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Because of that, it’s a little harder to peel. But when you do, you discover this creamy white wondrous root with the ability to clear your sinuses!
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Since it’s difficult to find a small piece of fresh horseradish, I store mine just like I do my ginger – in a jar, covered with white vinegar. The vinegar doesn’t impart a strong taste on the slices of horseradish, but it will keep them preserved.

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I bought a chunk of horseradish root for a Pickled Beets recipe that is posting tomorrow. But I have quite a bit left over. And I love serving prime rib with a creamy horseradish sauce. So here is another condiment that is so simple and quick, that it’s not worth purchasing it. Here goes:

Horseradish Sauce

1 – 8 ounce carton of sour cream* or crème fraiche
Grated horseradish, to taste (I would start with no more than 1 tablespoon)
Salt
Pepper, optional

Place the sour cream in a bowl. Add grated horseradish until you like the hotness. Season with salt and pepper, if using. If you’re not using immediately, don’t make it too hot, because time will increase the intensity of the horseradish!

This sauce will keep in the refrigerator for a few days until you make your prime rib, so make it ahead of time!

Right before serving, bring the sauce to room temperature. Taste for seasoning.

* If you use sour cream, let it sit on a paper towel for a couple of hours so the towel can absorb any watery liquid. Then you will have a nice, firm sauce.

note: Other ingredients can also go into a simple horseradish sauce. A little bit of lemon juice is good for a brighter flavor. And a little good mustard, about one teaspoon, will round out the flavor. And then there’s always chopped chives or diced shallots to put it over the top!!!