lentil loaf.

The Internet is rife with hyperbole, but the other day I finally, finally, made a lentil loaf.  Seriously.  I have a page ripped out from a magazine with a recipe for a Curried-Lentil Quinoa Loaf stuck in my food journal (because I’m cool like that), and the footer on the page says, “October 2010.”  Four years.  2014 has been a year of breakthroughs, apparently.  Of course, I did not use that recipe (because following through completely would be just too perfect) and instead I used the Lentil-Walnut Loaf recipe from Angela Liddon’s The Oh She Glows Cookbook.  I know I’m late to the party, but her cookbook and blog are so beautiful and inspiring: you can really feel her passion and dedication to good food.  This loaf did not disappoint!

What I made is a slight variation from the original, simply because I was trying to use what I had.  It was so good that I forgot to take a photo of it until it was half gone.  Also I don’t have a full-size loaf pan; I have only mini loaf pans, which probably sounds ridiculous for someone who bakes so much bread, but the loaf turned out wonderfully in a shallow 9×13″ baking pan.

lentil walnut loaf

A slight variation of Angela Liddon’s Lentil Walnut Loaf

serves 4-8

1 cup uncooked green lentils
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
2 carrots, grated
1/3 cup raisins
1 cup walnut pieces
1/2 cup oat flour
1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs (next time I’m going to try all oat flour)
1 tsp dried oregano
salt and pepper

for the balsamic-apple glaze:
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tbsp apple butter
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup

Soak the lentils overnight in plenty of water.  The next day, simmer the lentils in fresh water until they are tender.  Drain most of the cooking water, and pulse the lentils in a food processor or blender until it resembles a coarse paste.

Meanwhile, saute the onions in vegetable oil until they soften and take on some light colour.  Add the celery and carrots, and continue cooking until the veggies soften.  Throw in the raisins and walnuts to heat them through.

Stir everything together, and add salt and pepper to taste.  Line your loaf pan with parchment paper, and press the mixture into the pan evenly and firmly.  Whisk together the ingredients for the glaze and spread over the entire surface of the loaf.  Bake in a preheated 325 F oven for 30-40 minutes, so that the loaf dries out and the edges turn a little brown.  Let it cool before slicing so that it can firm up a little bit.  We ate it with coleslaw and wild rice for dinner.  Little slices of the leftovers are an excellent snack, stolen right out of the fridge, eaten cold.

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