Puy lentils have a delicate taste and texture and hold their shape during cooking, which makes them particularly good in salads. A combination of sweet peaches and sharp redcurrants complements them beautifully in this light, summery dish. Serve as an accompaniment to grilled fish or chicken.
Use other soft fruit such as blueberries instead of the redcurrants, and nectarines instead of peaches. * For a garlicky green lentil salad, put 200 g (7 oz) green lentils in a saucepan, cover with plenty of cold water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20–30 minutes or until tender. Drain well and tip into a bowl. Add 1 seeded and diced orange pepper, 1 chopped courgette, 4 chopped tomatoes and 2 sliced celery sticks. For the dressing, whisk 2 crushed garlic cloves with 1 tsp sun-dried tomato paste, 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, 2 tsp sherry vinegar and seasoning. Toss the dressing with the lentils and vegetables, and serve at room temperature.
Like other pulses, lentils provide fibre. They are also a good source of vitamins B1 and niacin, both essential for helping the release of energy from food. * Although mainly used in preserves and puddings and as a garnish, redcurrants can make a delightful addition to a savoury dish. They are a useful source of vitamin C, although nowhere near as rich in this vitamin as blackcurrants – weight for weight, they contain only a fifth of the amount present in blackcurrants.
A, C, copper, selenium * folate, iron, potassium, zinc * B1, B2, B6, E, niacin, calcium