Warm Summer Squash and Lentil Salad

Summer Squash Lentils (3)

Squash might very well be one of my favorite vegetables. I’ve never heard a person say, “I don’t like squash.” There are so many varieties, saying you dislike squash is like saying you don’t like herbs. It’s hard to generalize. I’m not a huge fan of spaghetti squash. Perhaps it’s because I don’t quite “get it”. But shying away from that one variety isn’t going to put me off squash for life. In the summer, I love zucchini, bright yellow summer squash and all the mini variations that come with it. Winter warms me to butternut squash, acorn squash and pumpkin (yes, pumpkin is a squash too!). I put up both summer and winter varieties, shredded or chopped in the summer, pureed in the winter so I’m never without.

This recipe is to celebrate summer squash and my beautiful CSA bounty. There’s something about the brightness and warmth of summer squash that is so inviting. It welcomes you with a smile and shines “this is freshness!” A new Meatless Monday favorite, it’s packed with nutrition and flavor. For dinner we enjoy it warm, right off the stove, for lunch, chilled or at room temperature. Possibly my favorite thing about this dish is that it’s a one pot meal. Lately I find myself overwhelmed with details. Toasted this, or a sauce of that. Weekday dinners should be simple, easy and low on dish washing responsibilities. While the lentils cook, you chop your veggies. Drain the lentils and leave them in the colander while you sauté your squash and vegetables. Mix it all together, season and enjoy.

Summer Squash Lentils (Serves 4-6)

  • 1 1/2 c dried green lentils
  • 3 c water
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium summer squash, diced into ½-inch pieces
  • 2 ears of corn, kernels cut off
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 c sliced scallions (about 3 whole)
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar or fresh lemon juice

In a small dutch oven (3.5 quarts) bring lentils and water to a boil. Reduce heat to an almost simmer and cook until tender, 20-30 minutes. Drain lentils and set aside.

Summer Squash Lentils (1)

In the same dutch oven heat olive oil over medium heat. Add squash, corn and a generous pinch of salt and sauté until tender. Stir in lentils, continuing to cook over low heat until dish is evenly warmed.

Summer Squash Lentils (2)

Remove from heat, stir in scallions and balsamic vinegar. Season with additional salt if desired and serve.

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12 comments on “Warm Summer Squash and Lentil Salad

  1. Carla says:

    Sounds and looks wonderful. I don’t get spaghetti squash either.

  2. saltedplates says:

    Ha! I am sharing a very similar recipe on Friday. Great combo 🙂

  3. Love the combination of the lentils and squash and corn. Sounds really delicious!

    • Thanks! It’s even better as leftovers because the flavors really settle in. As I was writing it, I was thinking I should have brought it Sunday. So easy and portable. Though the pulled pork seemed to go over well 🙂

      • That pulled pork was the bomb!! Now I wish I had taken a little more. I ate it that night with the BBQ sauce. The lentil dish would have been great too!! Also your bread pudding was so delicious, I wish I had taken a little of that also

      • Thanks Suzanne. The bread pudding also got better with age, more vanilla-y. We had the last of it last night and had to finish off the cream too so it was pretty much swimming in a pool of it. I think the cream was my favorite part!

  4. Hard for me to imagine someone disliking squash, too! This salad looks fantastic, I especially love the addition of balsamic vinegar 🙂

    • Thanks Christy! When someone says they dislike squash I’m like wait you dislike all squash? You don’t like zucchini, and some people don’t even put it together that zucchini and butternut squash are part of the same family.

  5. Fig & Quince says:

    As a food blogger this is sensitive info to divulge but during the summer I pretty much and mostly live on smoothies and salads and lentils! A recipe to jazz up my boring & routine lentil fare that includes squahs – a veggie that I like but for some reason almost never use – is, as we say in Brooklyn, poyfect! 😉

    • No shame. I would live on sliced mozzarella and heirloom tomatoes if I could! I never really go out of my way thinking I want to make a squash recipe, but then I get to the market and they all look so gorgeous. I end up going home with a few pounds and then have to figure what to do with them.

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