Yield: 4 servings as a first course
1 cup beluga lentils
1 bunch cherry belle radishes
1 bunch baby red beets
1 medium watermelon radish
1/2 cup carrot top leaves (or 1/2 cup watercress, arugula or parsley)
1/2 cup gooseberries
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar, plus more to taste
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons celery salt
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Rinse the lentils and sort through them to remove any small pebbles or twigs. In a medium pot, cover the lentils with 4 cups of cold water and set over high heat. Once the water comes to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the lentils are cooked to 'firm tender'. Drain and rinse again under cold running water. Drain well and spread out on a sheet tray to help cool and dry.
Meanwhile, make sure all the radishes and beets are scrubbed very well (especially the beets), as they will be eaten raw and unpeeled. Use a mandoline to cut them each into thin 1/4" slices. Depending on the natural shape of the vegetable, choose whether to cut into rounds or vertical slices (sometimes one way looks nicer than the other).
To make the vinaigrette, combine the vinegar and mustard in a small bowl. While whisking, stream in the extra virgin olive oil to create an emulsion. Depending on the sharpness of the radishes, you might need more or less vinegar. Season with the celery salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Toss the lentils, radishes and beets with the vinaigrette. Garnish with the carrot tops (or other greens) and gooseberries.