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Fennel, Cherry, and Goat’s Cheese Salad with Lentils

This lovely salad is not only delicious, but adaptable too: swap in feta for the goat’s cheese, if you like; and change it up later in the summer with figs in place of the cherries. Jane Hornby, the recipe’s author says, “This is one you’ll make again and again. It’s hearty yet light, and so fresh.” We’re in complete agreement and are certain you will be too!

Fennel, Cherry, and Goat’s Cheese Salad with Lentils

2 oz. walnut halves or pieces (½ cup)
9 oz. cooked Puy lentils (1½ cups)
1 large fennel bulb, finely sliced, fronds reserved
5 oz. cherries, halved and pitted (about 14)
1 tbs. red wine vinegar
2 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
½ tsp. honey
1 tbs. roughly chopped fresh tarragon
4 oz. soft goat’s cheese, thickly sliced and halved

Warm a dry frying pan over a medium-low heat. Add the walnuts and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until they smell toasty and the skins are a deep golden brown. Set aside to cool.

Warm the lentils, then tip into a large bowl and loosen with a fork. Tip the fennel and cherries on top.

Whisk together the vinegar, oil, mustard, honey, and tarragon, then season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Fold the dressing through the lentil mixture, then scoop the salad onto a platter. Scatter with the cheese, walnuts, and the reserved fennel fronds.

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