Mmmm…. Loaf. Ok, so the word ‘loaf’ is not the most delicious sounding thing in the world, BUT if you are craving traditional meatloaf, this plant-based version will definitely hit the spot! The flavor and the glaze particularly are a home run in the nostalgia department. A quick note on the EnerG egg replacements: this stuff is a really great staple to have around. It’s a very inexpensive blend of basically baking soda and tapioca flour. It’s just a baking mix that you add a little water too, and voila, stuff holds together. Follow the directions on the box for how to make an ‘egg’. You could also use a flax or chia ‘egg’ if you like. Two slices of this Lentil Loaf will provide you with about 200 calories, 10 grams of protein, and 20% of your daily recommendation for iron, plus a healthy dose of Lycopene! Serve this with some mashed potatoes and roasted carrots for a dinner straight out of 1950’s American suburbia. Grandma would approve.
Scrumptious Lentil Loaf
Makes about 12 slices
2.25 cups water
1/2 vegetable bullion cube
2 +1 tbs olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
10 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 red bell, minced
2 cup mushrooms, finely chopped
1/2 large carrot, grated
3 packed tbs chopped fresh parsley
1 cup dry red split lentils
3 tbs tomato paste
A big pinch thyme, paprika, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, salt, pepper
A smaller pinch of cumin
1/2 cup gluten-free rolled oats
2 EnerG egg replacers
1 tbs tomato paste
2 tbs brown sugar
2 tsp mustard
3/4 cup ketchup
In a medium pot, boil the 2.25 cups of water and the 1/2 bullion cube over hight heat. Use a spoon to breakdown and dissolve the cube. (Or you can just use 2.25 cups of vegetable stock, I just found that the vegetable bullion had a meatloaf-ier flavor)
Preheat oven to 400.
Once the water is boiling, add the dry lentils, reduce heat to low, and cover. Do not over-cook the lentils, they will turn to liquid mush! The directions on my package said 12 minutes, but check them at about 9 minutes. You don’t want them to have any crunch left, but you don’t want mush. Remove from heat and set aside.
Heat 2 tbs of the olive oil over medium heat in a large pan.
Add 1/2 of the chopped red onion, the garlic, the bell pepper, 1 cup of the chopped mushrooms, and the grated carrot to the pan.
Saute for about 5 minutes. Add the parsley and spices and heat another minute or until all the vegetables are soft. Remove from heat.
In a large bowl, or right in the pan if it’s big enough, combine the sautéed veggie mixture with the tomato paste, oats, egg replacers, remaining 1/2 of the chopped onion, remaining 1 cup of chopped mushrooms, and lentils. Stir everything until evenly combined. Give it a taste to see if it needs any seasoning adjustment.
Take a medium baking sheet and grease it with remaining tbs of olive oil. (You can also use a loaf pan.) Scoop all of the loaf mixture and mold it into a loaf shape on the pan. You can make it kind of tall, because it will settle down as it bakes.
In a small bowl, combine the 1 tbs tomato paste, brown sugar, mustard, and ketchup, and stir well. Pour this over the top of the loaf, coating the loaf evenly, and especially piling it high on top, so it can drip all around.
Pop your loaf in the oven for about 35-40 minutes. When you take it out, let it rest for about 8 minutes before slicing.
This was particularly good the next day, as it was easier to slice after being refrigerated overnight. Put a slice on a crusty roll and toast it in the toaster oven for a seriously yummy meatloaf sandwich.