I’ve been a fan of this salad ever since I spotted it on someone else’s table.
Many years ago, when I was a single girl in seminary, I was at Alice’s, a restaurant that used to be in Avenue U in Flatbush (no longer open), and I saw this salad come to someone’s table. It looked good, so the next time I was there, I ordered it. And that’s where the story of this Lentil and Beet Salad started. After that, I’d order this salad as takeout for lunch or dinner or whenever I wanted something healthy and filling. It was my go-to item on the menu.
I finished seminary in Brooklyn, moved back to Deal, got married, and forgot about the salad.
Fast forward more than a decade later (almost two decades); Ouri’s opened their new store in Deal. There it was, in the showcase with all the dips and salads: Alice’s Beet Salad. My long lost favorite salad was there in the showcase, ready for me to buy and enjoy again.
And though there are many salads and dips I do prefer to buy when I see some favorites available on the shelf, this one became so much a Shabbat staple that I prefer to make it in greater bulk myself.
I eat the leftovers for lunch during the week; even a little bit feels so nourishing and filling. It stays fresh in the fridge for at least a couple of weeks and just gets better and better.
Note on using vacuum sealed beets: I find that they are a good substitute for fresh beets, especially when you roast them. Do not use canned beets under any circumstances.
Lemony Lentil & Beet Salad
- ⅓ cup green lentils
- 8 oz vacuum sealed beets, chopped
- Salt, for sprinkling
- Juice of 1 lemon
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
- 1 tsp salt
- Add lentils to a saucepan. Cover generously with water. Bring to a boil and cook for about 20 minutes, until soft. Drain and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Line and grease a baking sheet. Add beets and sprinkle with salt; spray with cooking spray. Bake for 15 minutes.
- In a bowl, combine lentils, beets, lemon juice, parsley/cilantro, and salt. Keep in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve. Can be made up to a couple of weeks ahead (but I don’t know if that’s advisable because then you’ll eat it before the time you were planning on serving it…because that’s what happens when there’s something filling, healthy, and ready-to-go in the fridge).