I have served this Arugula, Lentil and Roasted Veggie salad to many different people (including kids) over the years and have never heard one negative review. The slightly bitter arugula leaves are balanced nicely by the sweet and filling roasted beets and and starchy sweet potatoes. Protein and iron-rich lentils add substance and (optional) goat cheese sprinkles complete the dish.
I like to serve this salad warm, but there is nothing wrong with eating it cold, either. I strongly recommend cooking your own lentils for this dish, although canned lentils are still a possibility when pressed for time.
Lentil, Arugula and Roasted Veggies Salad
1 small beet, quartered
1 medium sweet potato, cut into wedges
1/3 cup olive oil, divided
1 cup cooked lentils (or 1 can, rinsed and drained)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
1 tsp. sea salt
2 cups arugula leaves
1/3 cup parsley, diced
optional: 1/2 cup goat cheese crumbles
juice and zest of 1/2 lemon, possibly a bit more
Preheat the oven to 400*F
Place the beets on a cookie sheet, cover with 1 tbsp. olive oil and bake for 15 minutes. Take out of the oven, add sweet potatoes and bake for another 20-3o minuts, or until soft (check with a fork.) After 10 minutes gently mix the vegetables, so that they don’t get burned on one side.
In the meantime, place the lentils into a skillet with 2 tbsp. of olive oil and all spices, as well as salt. Gently mix and saute for about 2-3 minutes.
Arrange arugula leaves on a plate. Sprinkle with parsley. Put the lentils over arugula, in the middle of the plate. Put the beet quarters and the sweet potato wedges around the edge of the plate. Sprinkle with lemon juice and lemon zest. Sprinkle with 4-5 tbsp. olive oil and some more sea salt. If using, sprinkle with goat cheese crumbles.