If you are looking for a mouthwatering main dish to be the centerpiece of a special fall meal, look no more! This lentil loaf, seasoned with Italian spices and sun-dried tomatoes and topped with a delightful date glaze that adds that little something extra, is special enough to serve up for company. The texture is firm, so it slices and serves quite nicely.
1 cup onion, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup green or brown lentils, rinsed and drained
¾ cup water
1½ cups rolled oats
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons golden flaxseed meal
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2½ teaspoons Italian seasoning
½ teaspoon Benson’s Table Tasty salt substitute (optional)
¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes (with no oil); if you don’t have these,
use 1 more tablespoon of tomato paste.
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, a sweet one
1 tablespoon Date Paste (recipe below)
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Prepare a loaf pan by lining it with parchment paper, or use a silicone loaf pan.
2. Press the sauté cycle on your pressure cooker. When it is hot, add 2 tablespoons water and then the onions, carrots, celery, and garlic. Sauté for 3-4 minutes or until soft. Add the ¾ cup water and the lentils. Place the lid on the pressure cooker, cancel the sauté mode, and reset it to cook for 12 minutes on high pressure with natural pressure release. When the pressure has gone down, remove the lid. Carefully spoon out the lentil mixture, and if there is any leftover water that didn’t get absorbed, drain it off.
3. In a food processor fitted with the S blade, add the contents from the pressure cooker along with the oats, tomato paste, flaxseed meal, nutritional yeast, balsamic vinegar, Italian seasoning, optional Table Tasty, smoked paprika, and sun-dried tomatoes (if using). Using the pulse function, process until oats are incorporated and the mixture is well-mixed. You may need to stop and scrape down the sides with a spatula once or twice. Don’t process it into a paste; we want it to have some texture.
4. Scrape the mixture out of the work bowl into the prepared pan, being careful to spread it evenly across the pan. Smooth out the top.
5. Combine the glaze ingredients using a small whisk or a fork and spread it over the top of the loaf. Cover with foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes; remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool in pan for 10 minutes.
6. Slice into individual servings. May be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or frozen for future meals.