Quinoa Lentil Salad with Feta

A summer staple in our house, this salad has all the qualities of a perfect summer lunch: cold, refreshing and easy to prepare ahead of time. Although quinoa (pronounced KEEN wa) is not technically a grain, Nourishing Traditions recommends soaking it for at least 12 hours before cooking.

1 cup dry green lentils, soaked overnight in 2 cups water + 1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 cup quinoa, soaked overnight in 1 3/4 cups water + 1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon oregano

2 tablespoons minced fresh mint (or 2 t. dry mint)

3 tablespoons minced fresh dill (or 3 t. dry dill)

black pepper to taste

1 small bell pepper, diced

1/4 cup packed minced fresh parsley

1/3 cup finely minced red onion

1 stalk celery, minced

1/2 cup (2 oz) feta cheese, crumbled

1 tablespoon ground flax seeds

1 cup grape tomatoes, halved

1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts

In two separate covered pots, bring lentils and quinoa to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 5 minutes. Turn off heat and allow to finish cooking. If necessary, drain the lentils. Let the quinoa and lentils cool, uncovered, for 30 minutes or so.

In a large mixing bowl, combine all the remaining ingredients except for the tomato and walnuts. Add the lentils and quinoa, stirring to combine. Chill, covered, for about 4 hours.

Just before serving, top with the sliced grape tomatoes and walnuts.