Lentil Salad with Pasta

My go to dinner party, potluck, anytime happy dance comfort food pasta dish.

serves 4


1 cup dried brown lentils
1 package pasta (shells or orecchiette)
2 T olive oil (plus more before serving)
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
2 green onions, sliced in rounds
1/2 small yellow onion, finely chopped
2 T lemon juice
1-2 T ground sumac
1/2 t ground cumin
1/2 t ground coriander
1/2 t paprika
1/2 t dried basil
1/2 t dried crushed Marash or Aleppo pepper (an Armenian pepper) *
1/2 t dried crushed Isot pepper (an Armenian pepper)

To do:

Cook lentils and pasta according to package directions.  
Meanwhile combine all the other ingredients in a large serving bowl.  Add the lentils and pasta, salt and pepper to taste.  Stir well and serve warm.

* I am fortunate to live near many Armenian markets and can get these ground peppers easily.  The taste is really unique so they are worth seeking out but if you can't find them then substitute with another pepper you like, perhaps something on the sweet/smokey side like Ancho.  


Tahini Soup with Spinach and Garbanzos

I keep a can of garbanzo beans on stock just for this soup.  Can be made in minutes or you can add some zucchini and carrots and make a more complete meal in a bowl. A wonderfully pleasing vegan soup that is incredibly good with Irish soda bread, because in my family we like to mix things up.

Serves 2-4


1 10 oz bag fresh baby spinach (or about 8 oz frozen chopped spinach)
1 cup freshly cooked garbanzos ---or 1 can garbanzo beans
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons tahini
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (or 2 T diced preserved lemons!)
2 -3 cups veg broth or 2 teaspoons veggie bouillon powder
3 cups water (if using powdered bouillon)
salt and pepper

To do:

Heat olive oil in a large pot and add chopped onion, and sauté until translucent.
Add spinach and 2 cloves garlic and sauté for about 2 minutes.  Then add water, garbanzos (with liquid if using), vegetable bouillon and stir.  Bring to a gentle boil then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl place 1 clove crushed garlic, add lemon juice, (preserved lemon is using), tahini and 2 T warm water.  Stir well and add to the soup after it has cooked for 10 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  

Serve hot or cold.  Wonderful with a side of rice.

Makes 2-4 servings.

Fettuccine with Leeks and Lemon


If you find yourself hitting a wall midweek but you want to feel like you got it all pulled together, try this.  It's simple but feels sophisticated and tastes amazing.


Fettuccine with leeks and lemon

serves 4


  • 1 lb fettuccine 
  • olive oil
  • 1 leek, thinly sliced or chopped
  • 2 scallions, sliced in rounds
  • 1/4 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup chopped frozen spinach or 2 cups fresh
  • 1/2 preserved lemon
  • 1 fresh lemon
  • ground black pepper
  • red pepper flakes

To do:

Prepare pasta.

Sautée leeks, scallion and onions in olive oil for about 3-4 minutes, add spinach and cook for 3-4 more minutes.

Mince preserved lemons.  Toss pasta, greens and preserved lemons together.  Drizzle with olive oil and fresh lemon juice, salt to taste and add red and black pepper.  Enjoy!