Old-Fashioned Lentil Loaf
- Servings : 12
Providing heartiness, protein, and lots of familiar flavor, this loaf makes a great main dish, accompanied by a side of potatoes and green veggies.
- 4 cups (940 ml) water, plus more for sautéing
- 2 cups (385 g) brown lentils, picked over and rinsed
- 1 to 2 yellow onions, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3/4 cup (180 g) ketchup, divided
- 1/2 cup (55 g) bread crumbs, Italian-style or plain
- 1/4 cup (30 g) finely chopped raw walnuts
- 1/2 cup (30 g) finely chopped fresh parsley
- 2 teaspoons (1 to 2 g) finely chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon (1 g) dried thyme
- 1 to 2 tablespoons (15 to 30 ml) tamari soy sauce (or to taste)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons (15 to 30 ml) vegetarian Worcestershire sauce (no anchovies)
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 350˚F (180˚C, or gas mark 4). Lightly oil a 4 x 8-inch (10 x 20 cm) loaf pan.
Place 4 cups (940 ml) water and lentils in a large-size saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then immediately reduce heat and simmer until water is absorbed, 50 to 60 minutes. Check lentils after 30 minutes; add more water, if necessary. You want the result to be thick but with lentils cooked down to a soft texture, so add water sparingly.
Meanwhile, sauté onions and garlic in enough water to coat vegetables so they don't stick to the pan. Cook for 5 minutes, until onion is soft. Transfer to a large-size bowl.
When lentils are done, remove from heat, and let stand for at least 30 minutes. They will thicken up even more. When completely cool, combine with onion/garlic mixture, and add 1/4 cup (60 g) ketchup, bread crumbs, walnuts, parsley, thyme, tamari, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper. Thoroughly combine all ingredients. Adjust seasoning as necessary.
Press mixture firmly into prepared pan, and spread remaining 1/2 cup (120 g) ketchup on top. Bake for 45 minutes.
Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing.
This dish is even better the next day!