Vegan Lentil Walnut Loaf
For convenience sake, for calorie count, and for our sanity to make one thing simple within the rest of the world, individual packaging makes our lives easier. On a past health whim and constant need for clean teeth, I found my way obsessing over these cute, small packages of individual, desposable toothbrushes. It sounds nice, right? You’re on the go, just grubbed down on too much garlic and you need a quick refresher. Or lets say you happened to end up sleeping over at this guys house. You wake up before him, wreaking from the archway of your mouth. Conveniently located in your clutch is a wisp, this disposable toothbrush that cleans your teeth and freshens up your breath. You can see how these can become easily loved.
About a month later I showed these mini-toothbrushes to a friend of mine and he reminded me of the large impact I was contributing to the trash and polution in the world. Instead of using one toothbrush for a month, I was using much more. It wasn’t just the brushes that I was disposing of but also the packaging that encloses that. I felt I was helping out the environment with so many of the choices I made on a daily basis, but behind the corner of my eye, I was just as equally doing as much damage. Lesson learned. The point of my story is that individual packages can be nice and convenient, but they also add to the pollution problem we are trying to solve in the country.
As for the recipe today, these meatloaf’s are individual. They are convenient, pre-portioned and can be re-heated on a plate or taken on the go in a Tupperware container. Best of both worlds.
Vegan Lentil Walnut Loaf with Sweet Potato, inspired and adapted from Oh She Glows.
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 1 cup dry lentils; soaked for 1hour-overnight
- 1 cup yellow onion; diced
- 1 cup toasted walnuts; roughly chopped
- 3/4 cup sweet potato; grated
- 3/4 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup green onion; finely chopped
- 4 Tbsp ground flax seed
- 3 garlic cloves; minced
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp italian seasoning
- 1 1/2 tsp thyme
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/3 tsp black pepper
- In a medium sized pot bring vegetable stock to a boil. Add lentils, keep at a boil for 1-2 minutes, then reduce to a simmer. Cook until all of the stock has been absorbed (30-40 minutes). Stir the lentils frequently so they don’t stick or become burnt. Once the lentils are cooked, remove from the pot and set aside to cool.
- Pre-heat the oven to 350. Spray/butter/oil the inside of a muffin pan.
- Toast walnuts for 4-6 minutes. Be careful not to burn them. This process happens very quickly!
- Mix 3 Tbsp of ground flax with 1/2 cup warm water and stir. Set aside for 5-10 minutes to allow mixture to thicken.
- In a large skillet, sauté onions and minced garlic for 5 minutes on low-medium heat. After they have begun to sweat and turn transluscent, combine sweet potato, raisins, and chopped walnuts. Let cook for 2 minutes then add seasonings and mix through. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Smash 75% of the lentils with a large fork, potato masher or food processor. Combine the smashed lentils with the remaining lentils. Add the breadcrumbs, flax egg, vegetable mixture, garbanzo bean flour, and ground flax seed. Mix well.
- Scoop the loaf mixture into each muffin tin. Apply a generous ladle of bbq sauce onto each loaf.
- Cook for 45 minutes at 350F.
- Let cool for 10-15 minutes and serve.