How to Make Slow Roasted Tomato, Lentil, Brown Rice Salad

This main dish salad is originally from The Washington Post. I made it for vegetarian family members and was pleased with the results. It's basis is a mujadara, a traditional Middle Eastern diish

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Warm salad of slow roasted tomatoes with lentils and brown rice

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You need to give yourself plenty of time to roast the tomatoes. I prepared them the day before the rest of the recipe.

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Set the oven to 225.

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I like to get all the ingredients out in advance.

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This is what the container of labneh looks like.

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Drizzle a foil lined pan with olive oil. Lay out halved tomatoes. Sprinkle evenly with salt and pepper to taste. Add sugar, rosemary and garlic. Drizzle with olive oil.

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Slow roast 4-6 hours. Tomatoes should be shrunken and a little blackened at the edges.

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I let the tomatoes cool and refrigerate in a covered container if I am making the mujadara the next day. Just be sure to bring to room temperature before serving.

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Heat oil in a large saucepan over low heat. Add the sliced onion and a pinch of salt. Cook 20 minutes to soften, stirring occasionally. Increase heat to medium and cook 10 minutes until deeply golden.

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Add the water and lentils. Bring to a boil. Cover the pan and reduce the heat to simmer. Cook 10 minutes.

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Stir in the rice. I used regular brown rice instead of basmati. It was still delicious. Cover and cook for 20 minutes. Remove pan from heat. Let sit covered for 10 minutes .

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Meanwhile combine the saffron threads and 2 T boiling water in a medium bowl. Let soak for 5 minutes.

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Whisk in vinegar and oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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Stir the spinach leaves into the mujadara. Then add the chopped parsley. Save some chopped parsley to sprinkle on top for a garnish.

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Transfer the mixture to a large serving bowl or platter. Arrange the tomato halves on top. Dab each half with a scoop of labneh.

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Add optional toasted almonds and chopped parsley to top.

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Serve warm or at room temperature. Serves 6

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