Healthy and full of flavour, this recipe begins with the earthy essence of lentils and lifts to a salty-sweet, refreshing salad. It reflects the healthy Mediterranean diet by including plant-based food, olive oil not butter, herbs and spices and little salt, and no red meat. In order to cover all the Mediterranean angles, serve it with a side order of fish and single glass of optional red wine.

Refreshing Lentil Salad

(Makes 8 servings)


1 cup (240 ml)green lentils
 grated peel of one lemon
1/2 cup (120 ml)oil cured black olives
2 tablespoons (30 ml)capers
1/4 cup (60 ml)fresh oregano, chopped
2garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 cup (60 ml)fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon (15 ml)fresh lemon juice
1 pinchsalt
1 pinchpepper
1 tablespoon (15 ml)extra virgin olive oil


  • Rinse the lentils thoroughly, place them in a saucepan, and cover them with at least two inches of cold water.
  • Add the lemon peel and bring the contents to a boil. Cover the saucepan and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain the lentils and set them aside.
  • Squeeze the black olives in order to remove the pits. Either break or cut the flesh of each olive into thirds. The olives will leave a black stain. Wash hands and cutting board immediately.
  • Dice the flesh of the mango.
  • Combine the olive pieces, capers, oregano, garlic, parsley and lentils in a bowl. Stir gently to mix ingredients.
  • Place the lentil mixture into a serving dish. Sprinkle the diced mango over the mixture.
  • Mix the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a small jar and shake well. Drizzle the dressing over the salad.


Like pinto beans, kidney beans, navy beans and dry peas, lentils are a leguminous crop, or pulse, because they yield from one to twelve seeds of variable size, shape and colour, within a pod. They are high in protein and essential amino acid content. Just what doctors recommend!

Even though lentils are considered an “Old World” food, Canada is now the largest exporter producer of lentils in the world.