Lentils and bacon are made to go together, we think. Lentils have an earthy, rich taste that complements bacon perfectly. For this recipe we used a bag of mixed lentils that we bought at an Indian grocery. The mix of textures and flavors in the lentils worked very well here. We also added handfuls of fresh herbs from the garden; our instructions are a little loose, to allow you to play with the herbs that you have around and for your own taste preferences.
This is a deliciously easy and comforting dish, fragrant with bacon, garlic, and herbs.
Herbed Lentils with Bacon
About 3 cups
1 cup lentils
1 teaspoon salt
Fresh black pepper
4 slices of bacon, cut into lardon slivers
2 large shallots, minced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
5 sprigs of fresh rosemary
Half handful of fresh sage
5 sprigs fresh thyme
Large handful of fresh flat parsley
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Wash and rinse the lentils. Put in a small saucepan and cover with water. Cover and simmer over low heat until just cooked and tender - about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and fluff with a fork. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Cook the bacon in a heavy pan over medium heat until done. Remove and drain on paper towels. Drain most of the fat out of the pan, but leave a little and slowly cook the garlic and shallots until soft and golden. Finely chop all the herbs and cook them slowly with the garlic at the end.
Toss the bacon and herb and garlic mixture with the lentils. Whisk the dressing ingredients together and toss with the lentils too, tasting and adjusting as you go.
Related: Recipe: Smashed Lentils With Egg
Originally published September 11, 2007