Pasta with Lentils, Bolognese Style

This recipe is by far my son’s favourite dish. It is very easy to make and super delicious. Who doesn’t like pasta and tomato sauce, right?  Pasta and tomato sauce is such a comforting dish and it can even attract the fussiest little buds. Shhh… you can hide many veggies in it.

This recipe makes it to our table once to twice a week. It is perfect for those days when you want to cook something quick, but nutritious and delicious. Also, it is a dish that your little ones will love! 

For this recipe I used ‘Puy Lentils’ for added protein. I honestly love lentils! I’m a big fan of legumes of all forms. I find them very versatile and delicious. Lentils are a superfood, an excellent source of plant based protein. They are also high in soluble fibre (excellent to lower cholesterol), and vital nutrients such as magnesium, folate, calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium and zinc. 

If you have been relegating legumes from your diet, I encourage you to give them a chance. I truly think this recipe is a win and even hard-core meat eaters will enjoy it! It’s hearty, filling and a new twist to the classic Bolognese sauce. The nutty flavour from the lentils goes really well with the tomato sauce and herbs. 

In this recipe I use brown rice pasta, but of course, feel free to use the pasta of your choice. I also use passata. Passata and brown rice pasta are a staple in my kitchen. I started using passata when a dear Italian friend shared her tomato sauce recipe with me and introduced me to passata. The rest of the ingredients are the classic Italian herbs like basil and oregano, plus vegetables like onion and garlic.

I hope you and your family enjoy it! 

 

Ingredients 

Makes serving for 2 adults and a toddler 

2 cups brown rice penne (I cook 1 cup per person) 

¼ cup brown rice elbow type (I use this measure for my toddler) 

1 ½ cups cooked Puy lentils 

Tbsp Olive oil 

350 ml organic passata 

1 medium brown onion 

garlic cloves (crushed) 

Tbsp dried oregano 

Tbsp tomato puree  

½ tsp capers (finely chopped) 

1 small handful of fresh basil, finely chopped 

2.5 ml maple syrup 

A pinch of Himalayan salt 

6 green olives (optional) 

6 black olives (optional) 

How to: 

  1. Cook the pasta according to package instructions. 
  2. Heat on a medium heat a non-stick frying pan 
  3. When hot add olive oil, onion and crushed garlic cloves. Stir and let cook for about 5 mins, until the onion is translucent.
  4. Then add tomato puree and stir well for about 2 mins. 
  5. Then add the passata, mix well and add oregano, basil, salt, capers and maple syrup. Stir all up, lower the heat and let it cook for about 15 mins. 
  6. Add lentils and olives (if you wish to) stir to combine and cook for 10 more mins. 
  7. To serve, either spoon sauce over pasta or add pasta to the sauce and toss to coat. 
  8. Add salt to taste. 
  9. You can add more fresh basil to garnish. 
  10. Enjoy!

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