On days when you need to just sit and relax and enjoy a bountiful bowl of exquisite flavors … nuff said. What days don’t you need to do this? It happens more often in a week than I like to think about. It’s completely worth it to take the time one day in your week to prep lots of different ingredients to build several meals. Just do it one day. You’ll enjoy meals throughout the week so much more when you haven’t been strapped to the stove each night. This big bowl is a product of leftover foods enhanced with homemade rose pedal harissa and a light lemony vinaigrette. It’s remarkably flavorful, textural and the vivid colors make it so enticing.
Here’s what we used: Makes 3-4 big bowls
- 1-1/2 C black beluga lentils, cooked according to directions (you should get approximately 2-1/2 cups cooked)
- 1 T olive oil drizzle for lentils
- 3 – 4 C roasted organic chicken, sliced (dark and white meat)
- 1 large sweet potato, (approximately 2 cups) diced and roasted (directions below)
- 1 large yellow bell pepper, flame grilled
- 1 large red bell pepper, julienne cut
- 2 T olive oil
- 2 large avocados, peeled and sliced
- 2 C organic romaine or iceberg, chopped
- 4 C organic baby spinach
- 1/2 C chopped organic Italian parsley
- 1/4 C chopped organic mint
- 12 – 16 dried figs, sliced
- Store-bought or homemade harissa
- Lemon vinaigrette (recipe below)
Cook lentils according to directions. Set aside too cool and drizzle with a little olive oil. Roast a chicken using your favorite recipe OR a store bought roasted chicken will do. Cut 3 to 4 cups off bird and slice into bite sized pieces. If you don’t already have roasted sweet potato, preheat oven to 450. On a parchment lined sheet pan, place diced sweet potatoes. Toss in olive oil, smoked paprika, garlic powder and salt. Roast until fork tender and slightly caramelized. About 30 minutes. On your gas stove or under a broil, char your yellow pepper. Cool and slice (with skin) into 2-3″ lengths. In a saute’ pan, add 1 tablespoon olive oit, toss in your julienne cut red bell pepper and cook for 3 minutes. Set aside too cool. If you do not have a recipe for harissa, good store bought harissa can be found at Trader Joes or New Seasons or a specialty shop. You’ll need about 1/2 cup total.
To assemble, grab 4 big bowls. Begin by mixing your romaine, spinach, parsley and mint together and dividing equal amounts to each bowl. Decoratively display all remaining ingredients in equal amounts. Serve with sides of harissa, lemony vinaigrette and more chopped herbs.
- 1/3 C extra virgin olive oil
- 3 T fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp fresh lemon zest
- 1 T minced garlic
- 1 tsp toasted cumin
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp cracked black pepper
In a medium bowl, add all ingredients and whisk until well incorporated. Keep refrigerated in sealed glass jar for up to one week
This salad can be served completely cold OR with warm lentils and warm chicken for a little contrast in flavor. Adding cucumbers, chopped green onion, toasted walnuts or pistachios, julienne roasted carrots (or other roasted vegetables) or even a little goat cheese crumble would take this up a notch. We used what we had and it was fantastic, but any favorite additions will make it even more fantastic!
FOR A VEGAN VERSION ~ simply omit the chicken. Maybe add toasted cashews or walnuts or tempeh for protein.