Friday, March 16, 2012

lentil and cheese casserole (vegetarian meatloaf)

Part of my new healthier eating is eating way LESS meat.  In fact, I haven't cooked anything with meat in over a week.  In the past 2 weeks we've only had a birthday dinner that had meat, and salmon.  Like I said, way less meat.  It has been interesting.  So far for the most part I haven't had too many revolts from the kids.  Probably helps that I had my older boys watch food inc and food matters with me.
Back to the recipe.  This one was actually on my calendar for a few weeks before it got made.  Something about it being subtitled vegetarian meatloaf made me shy away from it.  I also think I kept avoiding it because it was made of lentils and sometimes they go over extremely well, and other times they don't go over very well at all.  This was one of the better times.  Only my oldest had horrible commentary to go with this meal.  He hated everything about it.  The casserole and the salad I served on the side.  Wanted to know why I was serving such gross and disgusting food.  However, both of my younger boys LOVED this.  They both had seconds.  Tavio also didn't seem to mind it because he too had seconds.  I think it has a lot to do with the fact that I sauteed my onions.  That was the biggest flavor in the dish.  So glad I chose to add that extra step from the original.
This recipe is adapted from one in The Six O'clock scramble.  I'm LOVING this cookbook.  It has lots of recipes and quite a few of them are vegetarian.  Not vegan, but vegetarian.  

  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese  + a bit more for topping if desired
  • 2 cups cooked lentils (directions below)
  • 1/2-1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 1 - 2 teaspoons garlic (can't remember how much I added)
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
** To make lentils, bring 3 cups of water to a boil.  Rinse 1 1/2 cups of lentils in a colander.  Add lentils to boiling water.  Return to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until tender.  (This made like 3 cups of lentils.  Not sure if I'd dare go down to 1 cup lentils, but I think 1 1/4 cup would be plenty without as many left overs.)  Cook these earlier in the day for a quicker meal prep.  If not, do step 2 first while the lentils cook.
  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Place cooked lentils in a large bowl and mash with a potato masher.  
  2. Saute the onions in butter until nice and golden.  Add the garlic and saute a minute or 2 longer.  Add the salt, pepper and thyme and stir to combine.  Remove from heat.
  3. Stir onion mixture and breadcrumbs into the lentil mash.  Add the cheese and eggs and stir to combine.  
  4. Evenly spread the lentil mixture in a loaf pan that has been coated with cooking spray.  Top with additional cheddar cheese if desired.  Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes.
  5. Slice and serve with ketchup or tomato sauce.  

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts with Thumbnails