Recipe Source: Adapted from stonesoup
Over the past couple of years, my love for vegetables has grown significantly, and I’ve started trying to cut down on my meat consumption whenever possible. But at times, I find it difficult to find vegetarian dishes that don’t feel like sides and/or take a ton of time to prepare (oh veggie lasagna, how I love you). This recipe combines the best of both worlds – it’s a great one-dish weeknight meal, and it’s hearty even for those who are used to eating meat. I love homemade spaghetti bolognese, but realized while eating this that I didn’t miss the meat – or pasta – at all! So this is also a great recipe for those watching carbs or gluten.
I modified the original recipe only slightly, by adding garlic and onions – must-haves, in my opinion! Since I tend to be pretty heavy-handed with ingredients, these little embellishments to Jules’ minimalist five-ingredient recipes still save me time during busy weeknights.
To make this recipe vegan, simply omit the butter and parmesan, or use substitutions. A light sprinkling of toasted breadcrumbs or pine nuts would be nice as well. If you’re feeling creative, you can add other goodies to the sauce – herbs, fennel, chili powder, etc. This concept might also translate well to a bechamel or cream-based sauce… if you experiment with it, I’d love to hear your stories!
RECIPE – Lentil Ragu with Zucchini ‘Noodles’
2 zucchini, thinly sliced, long-ways
2 tablespoons oil, divided
1 tablespoon butter
2-3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 small onion, finely diced
1 (14 oz) can lentils
4 tablespoons tomato paste
Salt and pepper, to taste
Grated parmesan, to serve
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200C).
Layer zucchini ribbons over a baking tray a few layers deep. Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 10 minutes or until the zucchini is no longer crunchy.
Heat 3-4 tablespoons olive oil and/or butter in a medium saucepan. Saute onion and garlic for about 10 minutes, then add lentils and tomato paste and cook for a few minutes until hot.
Taste and season lentils, adding a little more olive oil or some butter if the tomato is too sharp.
Divide zucchini between two plates and top with lentils.
Serve with parmesan on the side and a green salad.