This is a gorgeous winter salad with some textural interest from cooked lentils that are roasted until crispy and chewy. I turn to root vegetable and cabbage-based salads and slaws in the cold months because I find I’m less likely to crave a leafy, water-heavy salad. It seems that the body naturally craves foods that will help it to seasonally adapt. You can use any mix of root vegetables you like or have on hand.
Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C).
To make dressing, in jar with tight-fitting lid, combine olive oil, maple syrup, mustard, water, sherry vinegar, horseradish, garlic, salt, and pepper. Tightly secure lid, and shake jar vigorously until dressing has a creamy and smooth consistency. Set aside.
To make salad, bring medium saucepan of water to a boil. Drop in lentils and a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil again, and then reduce heat to a simmer until lentils are just tender, about 20 minutes. Drain lentils and spread out on kitchen towel to dry.
Transfer dried lentils to baking sheet. Toss lentils with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Slide baking sheet into preheated oven, and roast until lentils have dried and browned slightly, about 8 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
Using a mandoline, slice beets paper thin and place in large bowl. Slice carrots with the mandoline, and add to bowl. Cut celery root down the middle lengthwise. Slice each half of celery root with the mandoline, and add slices to bowl.
Season all sliced vegetables with salt and pepper, and toss.
Toss sliced vegetables with 2/3 of the dressing. Transfer dressed vegetables to a serving platter. Scatter crispy lentils over vegetables. Pour remaining dressing over lentils. Garnish salad with fresh dill, and serve immediately.
This recipe is part of the Cooking with The First Mess collection.
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