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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Marvelous Lentil Quinoa Nut Loaf

On the shockingly long list of vegan staples I've never tried making at home is the humble lentil loaf. Kind of a vegan stereotype of sorts, but one I've rarely encountered in person. I actually rather like the idea of a lentil loaf. Green lentils have a nice, earthy taste and I feel they pair well with walnuts & quinoa for a protein dense, rich loaf.

Great Vow has a nut loaf they make for special occasions, however, it is based around the use of eggs as a binder, so no luck in looking to that recipe for much inspiration. Online the recipes are hugely varied, to such a degree it is hard to find something that sounds right. After a lot of reading and recalling the meatloaf my Mom used to make, I came up with a very tasty dish.

It crumbles a little coming out of the pan, but not too much. Slices pretty well and we found it very satisfying, particularly when served alongside the very last of the amazing mashed potatoes Christie made for Thanksgiving. I'm going to be working on an entirely gluten-free version of this dish next.

The Stuff
(for loaf)
  • 1 small onion
  • 3 large cloves garlic
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 2 cups cooked, green lentils (overcooked is better, should be mushy/mashed)
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoon red miso
  • 2 T wheat germ
  • 1/4 c flax meal whisked
  • 1/4 c + 2 T water
  • 3 T tomato paste (taken from a 6oz can)
  • 1/4 c nutritional yeast
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 t sweet paprika
  • 1 t dried oregano
  • 1/2 t dried marjoram
  • 2 T fresh parsley
The Making (the loaf)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Whisk together the flaxseed meal and water in a large bowl, set aside. Dice onion and celery small, and mince the garlic cloves. Sauté the onion, garlic and celery until onion begins to caramelize. Add sauteed vegetables and remaining ingredients into large bowl with flax & water mixture and mix well. Spray a loaf pan with non-stick spray and fill the loaf pan with the mixture. Press down and top with tangy tomato sauce.

The Stuff (the sauce)
  • remainder of tomato paste from 6oz can
  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 2 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 t sweet paprika
  • 1/2 t black pepper
  • 1/4 t or less ground clove
  • 1/4 c water
The Making (the sauce & the loaf)

Whisk together all ingredients for sauce and spread on top of loaf before baking

Bake loaf 30 minutes covered, 10 minutes uncovered. Let stand for 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving.

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