So, in my unending quest to turn vegan, I stumbled across this recipe while watching an episode of Eat Well For Less. Although the people on that show irritate me no end (I can’t deal with their snobbishness and downright stupidity when it comes to food shopping), this recipe grabbed my attention. So, the very same night I gave it a go using a recipe I’d found on Netmums, but with a few twists to give the sauce that extra kick.
Serves 4-5 (lentils are weirdly filling). Original recipe here.
1 tsp onion powder (I hate onion and can only stomach it in this form)
garlic (2x cloves, minced)
200g dried red lentils
200g mushrooms (optional), sliced
800g chopped tomatoes (2 tins)
Chopped frozen peppers (or fresh ones). I used about 1-2 handfuls but for that five a day value, use 1 handful per person
1 vegetable stock cube, made according to pack instructions
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp mixed herbs
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 dollops of Malaysian Chilli Sauce (other chilli sauces may work too)
400g spaghetti (100g spaghetti per adult/50g per child)
Vegan cheese, grated (optional)
- Fry onion powder and garlic in a bit of olive oil until aromatic.
- Add the mushrooms (if using) and lentils, and fry until lentils start to go pale.
- Add the stock, tomatoes and herbs/seasoning. Mix through, then add the peppers. Stir before adding your balsamic vinegar and Malaysian Chilli sauce. Cover and simmer on a low heat for half an hour, stirring relatively often to stop the lentils from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
- While this is simmering, cook the pasta and the peas, if you’re using. If the sauce starts looking a bit too thick, add a couple of tablespoons of water to thin it out.
- Drain the pasta and the peas, and serve with the lentil bolognese. Grate some vegan cheese on top – Violife is quite good, as is the stuff they sell in Holland and Barrett (I’ve heard).
Tah-dah! You’ve got yourself a cruelty free meal.