Lentil Bolognese was my staple student meal whilst I was at University, and so I wanted to share my recipe on this blog in the hopes that you will make it and enjoy it time and time again as I did! It is a very warming and hearty meal and, as it is packed full of that essential protein from all those lovely lentils, it is also very nutritional. This recipe makes a large quantity, roughly 6 or 7 portions, which can be frozen in little baggies and kept in the freezer to be eaten as and when you wish.
This recipe has been adapted from: Ingram, C., Denny, R. and Richmond, K. The Complete Encyclopedia of Vegetables and Vegetarian Cooking (London, 1997), p. 290.
Serves approx. 6
2-3 tbsp olive/sunflower oil
2+ garlic cloves (I put as much garlic into my cooking as I can possibly get away with, but for normal taste buds, I’d recommend 2 or 3 cloves)
2 celery sticks
150g red lentils
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
a dollop of tomato purée (gives the Bolognese a nice colour)
¾ pint stock
salt and pepper
1. Begin by chopping the onion, garlic and celery and peeling and grating the carrots. Tip: Press down the flat of your knife on the garlic with the heel of you hand (as shown in the picture) and the skin should peel away easily.
2. Heat the oil in a large pan (which has a lid for later) and, on a high heat, soften the onion, garlic, celery and carrots (5-10 minutes).
3. Add the lentils, tomatoes, tomato purée, stock, herbs and seasoning and bring to the boil.
4. Turn the heat down to a simmer and cover and cook for 20 minutes, adding extra water if needed.
5. Serve up on top of pasta or spaghettis and sprinkle over some grated cheese (if you’re that way inclined).