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Amber Ale Lentil Salad with Hazelnuts and Cherries

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4 as a side dish

The nutty notes of a mild ale play well with those in the lentils and hazelnuts, while cherries and parsley add bright contrast to this hearty side dish. It’s a fantastic accompaniment to roast chicken or duck.


  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, minced (about 1/3 cup)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup dried French lentils (lentils du Puy)
  • 1 12-oz. bottle amber or brown ale
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped dried sweet cherries
  • 1 Tbs. cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted, skinned, and chopped

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 470
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 190
  • Fat (g): 21
  • Saturated Fat (g): 3.5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 14
  • Cholesterol (mg): 5
  • Sodium (mg): 1190
  • Carbohydrates (g): 50
  • Fiber (g): 8
  • Sugar (g): 6
  • Protein (g): 15


  • Heat 2 tsp. of the olive oil in a 2-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot and 1/4 tsp. salt, and cook until softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the lentils, 1cup of the beer, and 1 cup water. Boil over high heat, stirring once or twice, until the beer foam has settled, then reduce the heat to low. Simmer uncovered until the lentils are tender, 40 to 55 minutes, adding more water as needed to keep them covered. Drain, reserving the liquid, and transfer the lentils to a serving bowl.
  • Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the remaining 1/2 cup beer with the cherries, and let sit until softened, about 15 minutes. Drain, and discard the beer.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil with the vinegar, mustard, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Gently stir in the warm lentils. Let sit 10 minutes. Stir in the cherries, parsley, and nuts. If the salad seems dry, toss with some of the reserved cooking liquid. Season to taste with more salt or vinegar before serving.


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Reviews (1 review)

  • cdwilliams | 10/13/2018

    Absolutely delicious as either a vegan main (for 2) or a side (for 4-5) - robust and unexpected flavor from a lentil salad. I thought a cup of parsley would be too much, but added it all and it was the right amount. If making as a side, I might reduce the oil in the dressing as well as the total amount of nuts to reduce calories - the flavor would still be great. Another time, I might also put more of the beer with the lentils and save just 1/4 cup for soaking the cherries. When my cherries didn't seem to soften (15 min was not enough), I heated them in the beer briefly in the microwave. Finally, although the hazelnuts had a great flavor and crunch, they can be hard to obtain - this would work well with toasted pecans or walnuts if needed.

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