Friday, June 17, 2011

Lentil Loaf

I got a little tired of quinoa, so I hunted around for a different source of protein. I've never had lentils other than in my lentil soup - which it turns out, is a vegan recipe - and so I had no idea all the things you can do with it. You can make tacos (something I plan on trying soon) and you can make this lentil loaf! I was hesitant to say the least -- lentils in loaf form? No thank you! But unlike the bland dry concoction in my head, this was actually very flavorful and moist without being crumbly. I did make a few changes to the recipe, and you should know that while this isn't strictly vegan because of the eggs, you could make it vegan by using flax-seed eggs.

Lentil Loaf
Serves 6 large portions

Active time: 10 minutes (30 minutes of cooking lentils)
Bake time: 40 minutes
Total time: 1 hr and 20 minutes
Serving suggestions: Sweet potato fries, chunks, or soup, and a hearty green salad or roasted brussel sprouts.

What you'll need:

  • 2 1/2 cups water OR vegetable broth
  • 1 cup dry lentils, picked over and rinsed well
  • ¾ cup diced onion
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 3/4 c shredded carrots
  • 2 eggs, beaten OR 2 flaxseed eggs (2 T milled flaxseed + 6 T warm water, stirred with a fork and soaked for 5 min)
  • 1/2 cup spaghetti sauce
  • 3 TBLS BBQ sauce
  • 1 ½ tsp oregano
  • 1 1/2 tsp basil
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup mixture of BBQ sauce, ketchup, and/or mustard to your liking for the top and more for serving

What you'll do:

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Grease a 8 or 9 inch loaf pan and set aside.
  • Cook lentils.  When they’re done, mash slightly with spoon or potato masher. Transfer to a bowl and let cool a little.  
  • Add everything else to lentils and mix well.
  • Transfer to the greased loaf pan. Smooth out top and spread BBQ sauce/ketchup mixture evenly. Bake for 40 minutes.

Time Tip:  
Cook your lentils in a rice cooker earlier in the day.  
Shred the carrots and onion in a food processor.

Nutrition Facts (per serving, 1/6 of base recipe):
Calories 201 (Calories from fat 25); Total Fat 3g (Saturated .7g); Cholesterol 62mg; Sodium 191mg; Potassium 533mg; Total Carbohydrate 33g (Dietary Fiber 12g); Sugars 4g; Protein 13g; Vitamins/Minerals - Vitamin A 2994 IU; Vitamin C 5mg; Calcium 52mg; Iron 4mg; Folate 173mcg

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