If you're looking for the perfect end of summer/fall salad, look no further! This Za'atar Roasted Eggplant Lentil Salad with Sun-dried Tomatoes, capers, and wild arugula is a real winner! Dressed with a simple za'atar, olive oil, and red wine vinaigrette.
Another week, another eggplant recipe! My eggplant consumption has been through the roof lately and I wouldn't have it any other way. Last week I posted the Spicy Garlic Miso Roasted Eggplant which is probably still my most favourite eggplant recipe of all time (!!) but this one definitely comes as a close second!
I honestly didn't expect to like this recipe as much as I do. I had leftover eggplant in the fridge but didn't really know what to do with it. Then the next day, I got some free canned green lentils at work (I work part-time at a health food store in Toronto). I'd never used canned lentils so I was walking home, all excited to try something new, I was brainstorming what to use them in. Then it hit me - roasted eggplant lentil salad!
This salad is great as an appetizer or as a main dish with added protein. Roasted salmon or tofu would be delicious with this salad. It's great for both, end of summer, and fall. It's full of flavor and made with 6 simple ingredients! The recipe calls for dry brown lentils but you can use canned to make it even simpler! One can contains about 1 1/2 cup lentils.
What you need:
- Za'atar Spice Blend
- Lentils (canned or dry)
- Sun-dried tomatoes
- Wild arugula (or any other greens of choice)
- Zaatar red wine vinaigrette
Za'atar is a Middle Eastern spice blend usually made with toasted sesame seeds, sumac, oregano, thyme, marjoram, and salt. You can buy it at the grocery store or you can make your own, it's super simple! It only takes a few minutes and it's so worth it.
I love the combination of all the spices and sesame seeds with the capers and sun-dried tomatoes. If you don't have eggplant, you could even use bell peppers or zucchini here! The roasting time will be shorter with those - around 20-30 minutes.Print
Delicious tamari roasted eggplant lentil salad with sundried tomatoes, capers, and spicy wild arugula. Dressed with a simple za'atar, olive oil, and red wine vinegar dressing.
- 2-3 eggplants, diced (make about 6-7 cups diced)
- 2 tbsp avocado oil
- 3 tbsp tamari
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
- 1 tbsp Za’atar
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cup cups dry brown or green lentils (soak for 30 mins - 2 hours prior to cooking to reduce cooking time)
- 1 bay leaf and a piece of kombu (optional, see notes)
- 4-5 cups wild arugula (or any other greens of choice)
- 1 cup sundried tomatoes in oil, chopped
- 1/2 cup capers
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp tamari
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
- 2 Tsp maple syrup
- 1/4 Tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 Tsp Za’atar
- Start by preheating the oven to 425F.
- Dice your eggplants and spread them on a baking dish.
- In a small bowl, mix together the avocado oil, tamari, toasted sesame oil, za’atar, and freshly ground pepper to taste. Stir to combine and pour the mixture over the eggplant. Toss to cover evenly and roast for about 45-50 minutes or until soft. Toss 2-3 times throughout roasting. I also added about ¼ cup of water at the 30-minute mark to steam the eggplant a little, and to avoid it burning.
- While that’s roasting, cook the lentils. Rinse the lentils and add them to a pot with cold water, bay leaf, and kombu (if using) and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and cook until soft. Brown lentils cook 20-25 minutes, green lentils 18-20 minutes (shorter if soaked). Drain and set aside.
- To make the dressing, combine the extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, tamari, toasted sesame oil, maple syrup, crushed red pepper flakes, za’atar spice, and stir well to combine.
- When ready, combine everything but the dressing in a big bowl and toss to combine or divide between plates. Drizzle with the dressing right before serving.
You can also make this recipe easier by using canned lentils. 2 cans, drained and rinsed, get you the same amount as 1 1/2 cup dry lentils.
I like adding a bay leaf to lentils for extra flavor and kombu to help break down phytic acid in lentils making them easier to digest.
You can store this salad in the fridge for a few days. I recommend leaving out the greens and adding them when ready to eat. This salad is also great served with plain rice noodles.
The dressing makes more than you need, I always find it better to have more dressing than less. Save the leftovers for another salad!
The nutritional info is without the dressing. Add however much you like!
Keywords: eggplant, sundried tomatoes, lentils, capers