This is my favourite pasta sauce. It also makes brilliant vegan lasagne. I remember the first time I experimented using lentils in this sauce, rather than fake meat, I could not believe the improvement and it is much better for you. The sauce is made rich with fresh tomatoes and purée plus red wine and plenty of fresh herbs. It needs to be cooked until all of the sauce has reduced and been absorbed into the lentils.
It should be served with a chunky pasta that will hold the sauce but I also really love spaghetti. I served this with the mushroom and pine nut salad.
Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 50 minutes
A tin of cooked green lentils
3 medium fresh tomatoes, blended with a clove of garlic to make passatta
Two teaspoons of tomato purée
A slug of red wine
Two teaspoons of fresh thyme removed from the stalks
A small onion finely chopped
Half a medium carrot finely chopped
A tablespoon of olive oil
3 mushrooms finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
300g of whole wheat pasta
Heat the oil in a pan and add the onion, carrot and mushrooms. Fry for five minutes until straying to soften. Add all of the other ingredients and bring to the boil. Cook with a lid on for about 50 minutes. Remove the lid for the last five minutes to reduce the sauce further, if needed.
Cook the pasta until al dente and drain. Combine the sauce and pasta and garnish with fresh basil