About this recipe
This is a really great recipe to showcase delicious seasonal vegetables. Grilling the fennel on a high heat gives a really nice charred flavour that works perfectly with a zingy dressing. Puy lentils can sometimes be a little bland on their own, so stirring through olives and fresh herbs can make them instantly more flavoursome.
This dish is great for getting in some of your daily fibre from both the fennel and the lentils. I also love having a mixture of lentils and grains such as freekeh, quinoa or rice with the lentils for a great source of slow-release carbohydrates (and more fibre!) and added texture.
Buying packets of pre-mixed grains and lentils can be a really convenient way of getting a variety of pulses and grains.
You may have enough for leftovers the next day if you serve the lentils with grains. This dish also freezes very well.
For the roasted fennel
2 Large bulbs fennel, sliced into 1cm ‘steaks’
1 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
Zest of half a lemon
For the dressing
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
8 Black olives, roughly chopped
Juice of ½ a lemon
1 Clove of garlic, crushed
1 Small red chilli, finely chopped (use less if you prefer it to be less spicy)
2 Large handfuls of basil and parsley
Salt and pepper
1 packet pre-cooked Puy lentils / or 1 tin of drained lentils (around 250g)
Preheat the oven to 220C on the grill setting.
In a baking tray, combine the fennel, olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon zest, ensuring that all the fennel is well coated in oil. Grill for 15-20 mins until golden brown and just tender.
Meanwhile, prepare the dressing by mixing all the ingredients together in a small bowl. Taste before seasoning; only a little salt will be needed as the olives will also bring saltiness to the dressing.
Mix 2/3 of the dressing with the lentils.
Once the fennel is nicely grilled, remove from the oven and place on top of the lentil mixture, before finishing with the remaining dressing and a little more fresh herbs.