Pasta With Lentil Bolognese

This is a really hearty pasta dish that uses lentils in place of meat and is a great option for “meatless Monday”. I learned to love lentils after living in Umbria, and prefer to use the small beige or green lentils in my kitchen. Lentils are a nutritional powerhouse, and are high in fiber, are an excellent source of six important minerals, two B vitamins, and protein. Best of all they are fat free!

This sauce has a deep, rich flavor, and when tossed with pasta will please everyone in the family and no one will even miss the meat. Simply add a mixed green salad and a loaf of crusty Italian bread to create a complete meal.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2013

Pasta With Lentil Bolognese

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoons Olive oil
  • 1/2 Cup Finely Chopped Onion
  • 1/3 Cup Finely Chopped Carrot
  • 1/3 Cup Finely Chopped Celery
  • 4 Garlic Cloves, Minced
  • 1 Cup Dry White Wine
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 2 (16 Ounce) Cans Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1/3 Cup Finely Chopped Fresh Parsley
  • 1/4 Cup Finely Chopped Fresh Basil
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • 1 Cup Water
  • Salt And Pepper
  • 1 1/3 Cups Small Green Or Beige Lentils
  • 1 Pound Pasta of Choice

To Serve:

  • Grated Pecorino Romano Cheese

Directions:

  1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil and add the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic.
  2. Cook over medium low heat until the vegetables are soft and beginning to brown, about 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Add the tomato paste and wine and increase the heat to medium high.
  4. Cook, stirring often until the wine has evaporated, about 5 minutes.
  5. Add the tomatoes, parsley, basil, oregano. water, salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce the heat to medium low and add the lentils.
  7. Cook, stirring occasionally until the lentils are tender, about 30 to 40 minutes depending on the lentils used.
  8. If the sauce begins to dry out, add additional water as needed.
  9. Cook the pasta according to package instructions, then drain.
  10. Toss the pasta with the sauce then serve immediately, offering grated cheese at the table.