Mediterranean Inspired Lentil Pasta

20
Mar 2016

Do the flavors from different parts of the world take you on a mental journey? I find taste to be one of the strongest triggers for transporting me to another time and place. When asked by the Meatless Monday team to create a recipe using the mixed lentil penne from Modern Table Meals, spring time and the Mediterranean came to mind. The robust flavors of citrus, olives and fresh basil were combined for a Mediterranean Inspired Lentil Pasta Salad.  This recipe will cure a case of wanderlust, and my gluten free friends will especially enjoy an exotic trip right in their own kitchen.

Lentil Pasta for Meatless Monday

Modern Table Meals Gluten free pasta

Modern Table Meals was started by a group of busy moms, (aren’t we all) who wanted to bring healthy meals to the table, that were quick and easy to serve without compromising health for convenience. Lentils are one of my favorite protein packed secrets, so I was more than a bit curious to see how this pasta, made from lentils, would taste. While I don’t have a gluten allergy, I love pasta and find my body has a tough time digesting it. This could be a great find for my pantry!

lentilsinbowlphotobunny

Beans (lentils) are high in plant-based protein, making them a lower fat, less expensive and more sustainable option than animal protein, and a great reason to go Meatless on Monday. The USDA actually puts lentils into two food groups. Meeting the requirements of both protein and vegetable, lentil lovers are eating two eco-friendly foods at the same time. Lentils are high in zinc, folate and other healthy nutrients. Farmers love planting beans, as they add nitrogen back into the soil, helping additional crops grow.

Eating the rainbow

Eating the rainbow. I’m not sure who coined the phrase, but I think it’s a genius idea to remind us about the colors we should try and incorporate into our diet on a regular basis for balance. This recipe is a perfect opportunity to accomplish the concept of wellness eating for your good health.

lentil pasta salad

Mediterranean Inspired Lentil Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 Package Modern Table Meals mixed Lentil Pasta (serves 4)
  • 4 radishes thinly sliced
  • 4 roasted beets-do not overcook, as you want a crunch-chop into bite size pieces
  • 1/2 cup chopped basil
  • 1/2 cup chopped black olives-use the wrinkled Nyon variety if you can find them. Make sure to pit them first.
  • 3 mandarin oranges. They are currently in stores and delicious! Any orange will work in the recipe. Cut into small pieces.
  • 2 oz feta cheese-crumbled *optional
  • 1 T. chopped red onion *optional
  • salt and pepper to taste

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  • 1/2 c. good quality olive oil
  • juice of 2 oranges
  • 1 T. white vinegar
  • 1/2 t. honey
  • 1 t. grated orange rind
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cook lentil pasta according to package directions. Drain, do not rinse and toss with 1 T. olive oil. Toss ingredients through red onion (if you are using). Make dressing by combining olive oil, orange juice, vinegar, and rind. Wisk together and toss with salad. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

You’ll find  the penne tastes very much like its lentil ingredients and is chewier than regular pasta, all good things in my book. I look forward to trying additional selections from the Modern Table Meals brand and hope this has inspired your Meatless Monday.

Pin Me ♥ Mediterranean Inspired Lentil Pasta Salad

 Mediterranean Inspired Lentil Pasta Salad

As a Meatless Monday Ambassador, I received several types of penne to try.  As always, opinions of the product reflect my own tastes and experience.

  1. Sounds delicious! With spring on its way, this healthy recipe is a great reminder and an easy way to “eat the rainbow”

  2. Janice Chung says:

    Love it! I fell in love (?) with lentils when I was in Morocco and I am with you, I can’t always eat a lot of pasta, so this looks interesting, especially with all those healthy ingredients.

  3. This looks like a terrific recipe. I am missing these flavors! Very intriguing that mandarin oranges are included. Will have to try!

  4. Saving this recipe, and I’ll be trying it soon (now that I have a kitchen and landing zone between travels)!

  5. Food definitely takes us back to the places we have visited. We love to try to create meals we have had on our travels. This one looks great, have to try it sometime.

  6. What an interesting blend of flavors! I want to try this, even if I make it with regular pasta. I will also share it with a friend who must eat gluten-free.