It is the tradition in Italy to eat lentils for prosperity in the New Year. Round little lentils, or lenticchie, represent Roman coins. If you eat lentils on New Year’s Day, wealth and good fortune will be on their way to you.

Lentils are usually served as midnight is about to strike on New Year’s Eve, so you can eat your lentils first thing in the new year. Then wash them down with a glass of Prosecco, naturally.

This practice dates back to Ancient Rome. Who am I to argue with my ancient ancestors? So here is an easy and tasty recipe for lentils.

Warm Lentil Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried lentils
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup onions chopped fine
  • 1 cup carrots chopped fine
  • 1 clove garlic minced

Dressing

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

Directions:

  • In a large sauce pan, add lentils, water, and bay leaf, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes until tender.
  • Drain lentils, and discard bay leaf.
  • In the meantime, saut√© onions and carrots in 2 tablespoons of olive oil until softened.
  • Add garlic and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant.
  • For the dressing, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients, and toss together thoroughly.
  • Serve warm.

Will you serve lentils for prosperity this New Year?