Chestnut Lentil Loaf
This chestnut lentil loaf is vegan, oil free, and packed with lentils, veg, nuts and whole grain. It is a complete meal in itself!
I use tinned green lentils for my chestnut lentil loaf. It is easy to cook green lentils from dry but it is quicker to open a tin! In addition to the pre-cooked lentils, I use pre-cooked chestnuts. I buy ‘Merchant Gourmet’ pouches of roast chestnuts. They’re yummy!
The loaf contains baked sweet potato and I actually cook that myself! We eat baked sweet potato quite regularly. You stab some sweet potatoes, stick them in a covered oven dish and bake at 180C until soft and gooey. As an aside, baked sweet potato goes really well with hummus or tahini dip. When making baked sweet potato I often make extra so that I have leftovers for lunches or for making chestnut lentil loaf. However, if you don’t have baked sweet potato to hand then you can quickly microwave one for this recipe. Stab your sweet tattie, then pop it in the microwave for a few minutes. Check it regularly. It’s ready when it is soft all the way through.
Hazelnuts work really well with the chestnuts and sweet potato in this loaf, though you can use whatever nuts you fancy. I like to roast my hazelnuts before I use them. For instructions on roasting nuts, see here.
Milled chia acts to bind the ingredients together. You could use milled linseed instead if you wanted. Both chia and linseed contain lots of omega 3 fatty acids, and these fats are more bioavailable when the seeds have been milled. Omega 3 fatty acids are pretty unstable, even more so in milled seeds, and because of this I store milled chia and linseed in the freezer. Luckily, everything I have read suggests that these fats are pretty stable in the short term when the seeds are used in baking.
Serving chestnut lentil loaf
Although this vegan loaf is a complete meal in itself, it’s nice to serve it with other nice things! I like to serve it in a sandwich or with a big salad. It’s good served with tomato pasta or as part of a gravy dinner. Basically you can serve it with anything!
Free from: soya, yeast
Gluten, wheat free: use suitable oats
This is a vegan recipe
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- 180 g packet cooked chestnuts
- 2 handfuls kale
- 3 tbsp hazelnuts (or other nuts)
- 1 medium sweet potato (about 150g raw)
- 1 tin lentils (drained and squeezed to remove water)
- 1 tbsp milled chia
- 3/4 cup porridge oats
- 1/2 tsp each of paprika and garlic granules
- salt and black pepper (to taste)
Cook the sweet potato in the oven or microwave until soft. Remove the skin.
In a food processor blitz the chestnuts, kale and the hazelnuts.
Add the sweet potato, lentils and chia to the processor and pulse to roughly chop. Dollop the mixture into a large bowl.
Stir in the oats. You should have a thick batter that holds together when pressed. If the mixture feels too wet add a few more oats.
Season with the spices, salt and pepper. When it has cooked the flavour will mellow so overseason it slightly. Give it a good stir so that everything is mixed properly.
Transfer the mixture to a lined 2lb loaf tin and cook for about 40 minutes at 180C. It is ready when it is golden and crispy on the top.
Allow to cool slightly in the tin then transfer to a wire rack. Serve hot or allow to cool. The loaf keeps for a few days in the fridge. Alternatively slice it up and freeze.
To reheat frozen chestnut lentil loaf, pop slices in the oven at 180C for about 20 minutes, or until hot all the way through.