The Le Puy green lentil is a small, mottled, slate-gray/green lentil of the Lens esculenta puyensis variety. In the US, this type of lentils may be grown and sold as French green lentils or Puy lentils.
Puy lentils are considered by many to be the best lentil because of their unique peppery flavour and the fact they hold their shape during cooking. We have tons of Puy lentil recipes that are healthy and comforting, like Puy lentil bolognese and lentil shepherd's pie.
Those small French green lentils, the ones known as lentilles du Puy—how do they differ from the standard brown or green lentils? Recent talk on Chowhound broke it down.
French lentils take less time to cook and retain their shape better than ordinary lentils, blinknoodle says. There’s also a subtle flavour difference: French lentils have a slightly flinty taste, earthy with a slight mineral edge.
Thanks to their firmer texture, French lentils are perfect for salads, like this one from CHOW (pictured). Sherri makes a lentil salad with green onions, parsley, diced or grated carrots, and toasted walnuts, dressed with walnut oil and sherry vinegar.
French green lentils are good in soups, like the one with vegetables and bacon that mwk makes. And they’re a natural in hearty dishes like petit salé, a farmhouse stew of lentils simmered with ham hocks, sausages, and aromatic vegetables.