I have been putting together quite a few meals with lentils and other grains/pulses recently and another bonus is that lentils and grains are usually quite cheap too. I have various types of lentils, split peas, beans etc in my cupboard. They are handy staples to have and of course my little ones love them.
The addition of sweet potato in this recipe gives it a lovely sweet taste and removes some of the acidity of the tomatoes that you sometimes get without of course the need to add any sugar.
serves 4 (2 adults and 2 kids) with plenty leftover to freeze for another day
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 2 carrots, finely chopped
- 1 courgette (zucchini), finely chopped
- approx 8 button mushrooms, finely chopped
- 1 medium sweet potato, chopped
- 3/4 cup of uncooked brown lentils (approx 180ml), rinsed
- 800ml of tinned chopped tomatoes (no added salt)
- 300ml of low sodium vegetable stock
- 4 tablespoons of tomato paste
- mixed herbs
- splash of balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- Fresh Italian Parsley
Add your olive oil to a large pot over a medium high heat, add your onion and garlic and fry until softened.
Add the carrot, courgette (zucchini), mushrooms and sweet potato and fry for a further 5 mins.
Add the lentils and mix well.
Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, stock, mixed herbs and splash of balsamic vinegar
Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for a couple of hours, the slow cooking really softens the lentils and allows the flavours to develop. It would be great done in a slow cooker too.
Check it a couple of times through cooking time, just incase it looks like too much liquid has been absorbed ,as you may need to add a little more stock/water.
Serve with pasta and top with some fresh chopped Italian parsley (although if any of your little ones freak out at the sight of green food, you might want to leave this off their serving) and watch your little ones enjoy this dish packed with lots of healthy veggies.