Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Beluga Lentil Bruschetta

Today is the official first day of summer. In the Phoenix area we start summer much earlier. It has been super hot here for weeks now. This time of the year the oven is avoided at all costs. I love cold foods from June to September, I swear. 

The other day, Fred mentioned that the pantry overfloweth. He thought I should think about using some of the dried treasures on the shelves. Quite some time ago I bought some Beluga lentils for a recipe. I only used half the bag, so there they were. Cute tiny little protein packed lentils. They are sometimes called vegan caviar. They cook up very quickly and are very mildly flavored. They stay pretty firm, which makes them perfect for cold dishes.

The garden is starting to struggle in the 110+ degree weather. Luckily we had one last gasp of yellow pear tomatoes and a giant zucchini, which I happily diced up for this yummy take on bruschetta. 

Beluga Lentil Bruschetta

Makes 12-20 pieces depending on the size of bread.

1/2 cup Beluga lentils, rinsed
1 1/4 cup water
1/3 cup yellow tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup grilled zucchini, diced small
1/2 cup roasted peppers, diced small
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, minced
1 tablespoon fresh basil, minced
1 teaspoon capers, roughly chopped
2 tablespoon sweet onions, minced
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh parsley

Note: all herbs are measured after mincing/chopping.

In a non reactive bowl, mix all ingredients. Let marinate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. 

French baguette approx 1/2 inch slices. 
Olive oil to brush bread slices.
Lightly brush both sides of each slice of bread. Place in one layer on a cookie sheet. Either bake in a 350 oven or on the grill for about 4 minutes per side until bread is nicely browned.

Using a spoon top each slice of bread with lentil mixture. Serve immediately.

The lentil mixture also makes a great salad all on its own if you are trying to cut out the carbs. It's gluten free too!!!