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VEGAN BOLOGNESE SAUCE
- 2 tbsp / 30 ml olive oil
- 1 small red onion, finely diced
- 3 large garlic cloves, finely diced
- 1 carrot, very finely diced
- 1 celery stalk, very finely diced
- 12 cherry tomatoes, washed and halved
- ¼ cup dry small green lentils, cooked
- 6 sun-dried tomatoes
- large sprig of basil
- large handful of walnuts, approx 25 g
- 3 tbsp tomato sauce
- ¼ tsp hot chilli powder (optional)
- grated nutmeg, to taste
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1-2 tsp raw sugar (optional, if tomatoes aren’t sweet already)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- fresh basil, to garnish
- 200 g wholemeal spaghetti (gluten-free for GF version)
- Boil a big pot of water for the pasta. Heat up olive oil in a large frying pan.
- Add diced onion to the pan and fry on a low heat until soft, then add in diced carrot and celery. Fry until soft, stirring frequently. Finally add in garlic and sauté until it softens and becomes fragrant.
- Place sun-dried tomatoes in a small bowl. Once pasta water has come to the boil, ladle out a small amount of boiling water and pour it over your dried tomatoes. Let them soak for 5-10 minutes. This will soften them. Cook your pasta in the remaining water until nearly al dente, drain and set aside.
- Chop softened sun-dried tomatoes roughly and put them into a pestle and mortar. Pound them into a paste. Add walnuts and chopped basil leaves and work them into the sun-dried tomatoes. Add a bit of olive oil or water (if you don’t want to use too much oil in your meals) to help you work this quick pesto better.
- Move mirepoix (onion, carrot, celery and garlic mixture) to the side of the pan and place cherry tomatoes on the pan, cut side down. Let them cook for about a minute, then add pesto in, cooked lentils, a bit of tomato sauce and balsamic vinegar. Season with sea salt, black pepper, nutmeg, chilli and sugar to taste.
- Add cooked pasta to the pan. Toss it in the sauce, let it warm up for a minute and serve.
For more tips and meal ideas, download our FREE 12 WEEK LEAN UP Healthy Eating Guide! Click here to download.