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Tuna and lentil salad

November 13, 2009

tuna salad

A weeknight dinner needing to be high protein, low carb and low fat (yes the dreadful weight loss eating plan continues albeit with a serious case of cake addiction).  A quick meal in the old days of high carb dinners was to create this tuna thing and toss it through pasta. I decided to replace the pasta with some lovely du puy lentils that we all love, and to serve it warm to trick myself into thinking that a salad was ok for dinner (it was one of those nights when starchy carbs were sounding pretty attractive). It worked!

Tuna and lentil salad

3/4 cup du puy lentils (soak them in a bowl of water for about 15 minutes if you have time)
1 large can of tuna in oil (use the cat food like tuna in spring water if you are more virtuous than I am. I used a can of Sirena and drained it well)
1/2 preserved lemon (use the zest of a lemon if you don’t have these, and remember to add in a bit of salt)
1/2 cup of kalamata olives
1 red onion
2-3 cloves of garlic
1 bay leaf
chilli flakes
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tbs dijon mustard
2 tbs olive oil if you went the cat food option with the tuna

In a small bowl combine the mustard, a tiny pinch of salt (remember the preserved lemons are salty), pepper, lemon juice and olive oil if you are using it.

Put the lentils in a pan with plenty of water, a bay leaf, a clove of garlic and the stalks of the parsley and cook on a medium heat for about 15-20  minutes. Check the lentils occasionally, you want them cooked but not mushy. Drain and stir through the dressing.

Slice the onion and pan fry it in a few drops of oil until softened and transparent. Add the finely minced garlic and the chilli flakes and fry for another minute. Now add in the tuna, olives and finely diced preserved lemon. Stir gently and cook for a few minutes on a low heat.

Mix the tuna and lentils together and serve on a bed of rocket or on its own. I added a swig of extra virgin olive oil over my kids serve of this salad as they certainly don’t need a low fat dinner.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. November 13, 2009 3:29 PM

    Yum! I agree completely about the tuna, btw, and I doubt whether even cats would eat tuna in springwater. We’ve been buying Australian blue lentils which are quite like the French ones, but massively cheaper. Let me know if you’d like me to pick you up a bag (500g for $6, from memory), next time we’re at the markets.


    • spiceandmore permalink*
      November 16, 2009 12:05 PM

      Cats are pretty disgusting though…I am sure they would eat anything(?)!
      I bought a big 5kg bag of du puy lentils from the organic wholesale place (Honest to Goodness) quite a few months ago and still have some left. I seem to remember they were pretty cheap (when you buy a monster size bag like that)….but since we all love these lentils I was happy to buy in bulk. I made a very nice vegetarian biriyani with them one time, will have to make it again and post the recipe. Thanks for the offer to buy me some at the markets though….perhaps when I run out of them.

  2. November 13, 2009 6:05 PM

    your kids eat salad???? now in our days ….

    We had a daal with the same lentils last night I think. A surprisingly healthy dinner of that, rotis and potatoes and bell pepper sauteed in light masala

    • spiceandmore permalink*
      November 16, 2009 12:01 PM

      Yeah, wierd kids, right? Actually they eat most things except for rocket and some of the bitter lettuces…and eggplant, mushrooms and capsicums (all three loved by me). I am working on them though…will convert them eventually!
      The daal you used is probably brown lentils which look like a bigger size version of the du puy lentils. The du puy have a blue-green tint to them and retain their shape well after cooking (the brown lentils go to mush very quickly from memory). The du puy also have a slightly nuttier taste.

  3. November 30, 2009 4:50 PM

    This does sound perfect for a weeknight! And yes I try and make them healthier (so I can eat more on weekends) 😛

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