Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cheesy Lentil Loaves

Tonight, I decided to try a new vegetarian meal, Cheesy Lentil Loaves. I modified a recipe I found on the internet:Cheesy Lentil Bake. It tasted similar to a quiche and surprisingly Liam loved it! The consistency was perfect for only having a few teeth!

 As I mentioned before, Lentils are high in fiber, a great source of protein, and inexpensive! Additionally, they are a great source of iron and essential amino acids. Essential amino acids are those that are necessary for good health but cannot be synthesized by the body, and therefor they must be consumed in the diet. 

 Also, when it comes to trying new foods and new recipes, similar to the Cheesy Lentil Loaves, don't be afraid to go out of your comfort zone and try something new! Get the kids involved. I am sure they will love helping out in the kitchen and you may be very surprised about what new foods your children will try! I can't wait to see what Liam will come up with when he is older! 

Cheesy Lentil Loaves


¾ cup red lentils

12 oz low sodium vegetable stock 
¼ cup light cheddar cheese, grated
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
½ of green, red, or yellow bell pepper finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
½ tsp cayenne pepper
Dash of cinnamon 
1 tsp lemon juice
1 large egg3 tbsp light greek yogurt or light sour cream
Freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1. Preheat the oven 375F
2. Pick over the lentils for any sticks and stones. Rinse thoroughly and cook in a tightly covered pan with the water for 10-15 minutes. Check after 10 minutes in case you need to add more water. The mixture should cook to a stiff purée.
3. Sauté onion and bell pepper in olive oil on medium–high heat for about 5 minutes or until onions are opague.
4. Remove the pan from the heat and mix in the grated cheese, cooked onion, pepper, parsley, cayenne pepper, black pepper, dash of cinnamon, and lemon juice.
5. In a separate bowl lightly beat the egg, stir in the greek yogurt or sour cream and pour this mixture over the lentils. Mix well. 
6. Grease small loaf pans or a 1lb loaf tin and pour in lentil mixture. 
7. Bake for 45-50 minutes until the top is golden brown and the mixture feels firm to the touch.
8. If you are serving this loaf hot, let it stand for 10 minutes in the tin before turning it out.

 To balance the meal, I served it with steamed broccoli and roasted butternut squash! Enjoy!