Humans have known lentils (Lens culinaris L.) since the dawn of civilization. However, I don’t think I ever ate lentils whilst growing up. Did you?
Beans were culinary outcasts and despite my mother growing broad beans in her garden, I hardly remember eating them. Dinner nearly every night, was some type of animal meat or chicken, potatoes and a few vegies. For hungry busy kids, there was always dessert and if we had a vegetarian meal, it was the lettuce in our sandwiches tucked away in our lunchboxes.
How times have changed!
The lentil is an edible legume. For women in mid-life with changing cholesterol levels, they are low-fat and help to reduce cholesterol. Lentils also maintian steady blood-sugar levels and are high in protein. Even America’s Martha Stewart calls them a ‘super-food‘.
Most importantly, adding lentils to our meals helps our gut health. They are known to improve our gut microbiome, by providing resistant starches and of course, fibre.
This loaf is very easy to make. It’s also really healthy and if you’ve already got high cholesterol or you are pre-diabetic or diabetic, then give it a go. Served with salad, it’s a great family meal and you can cut a perfect slice of any leftovers to put in your lunch-box the following day.
The MyMT™ KITCHEN: There’s lots to love about a Lentil Vegetarian Loaf
- 1 can of lentils (use green/brown)
- 3 tablespoons flaxseed meal (ground flaxseeds)
- ⅓ cup water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 small onion, finely diced
- 1 small red bell pepper, finely diced
- 1 carrot, grated
- 1 zucchini, grated
- 1 cup organic oats
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme (or Italian Seasoning)
- 1 teaspoon EACH garlic powder & onion powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin, optional
- Cracked pepper & sea salt, to taste
- Glaze: 3 tablespoons of organic tomato paste, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon of maple syrup
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
Make flaxseed binder: In small bowl combine flaxseed meal and ⅓ cup water, set aside for at least 10 minutes, preferably in the refrigerator. This will act as a binder and will thicken nicely upon sitting.
Sauté vegetables & spices: Sauté garlic, onion, bell pepper, carrots and zucchini in oil for about 5 minutes. Add spices mixing well to incorporate. Set aside to cool.
Cook lentils in a separate pan on medium heat for 5 – 10 minutes – until soft.
Mix lentils, sauteed vegetables, oats and flaxseed binder in a food processor until it forms a paste. Taste, adding salt and pepper as needed, or any other herb or spice you might like.
Place mixture into a loaf dish lined with baking paper and bake for approximately 45 minutes.
Glaze: Mix all glaze ingredients in a bowl and then spread evenly over top the loaf.