Mini Lentil Loaves
Lentils, a staple in South Asian and Middle Eastern countries, now seem to be rising in popularity in the U.S.¬ — and for good reason. Lentils are an excellent source of fiber and protein and can be a fabulous addition to your diet and to your personal goal for colon health.
Fiber binds toxins and wastes during the digestive process and moves them out of the body. They are packed full of fiber. Like beans, they are part of the legume family, but they actually have double the fiber. One cup of cooked green lentils has about 24 grams of fiber. Studies have shown that people who eat legumes at least twice a week cut their risk of colon cancer by half.
Lentils are also a great source of protein (20 grams in 1 cup), as well as iron, vitamin B-6 and magnesium. Magnesium contributes to keeping your colon healthy and cuts your risk of colon cancer. So give these Mini Lentil Loaves a try to add more fiber and magnesium to your diet. They might just remind you of delicious little meatloaves!
Ingredients: (makes three 4-inch mini loaves)
- 1 cup of dry green lentils (2.5 cups cooked)
- ¼ cup dry quinoa (about ¾ cup cooked)
- 1 tbsp oil
- 3 tbsp onions, diced
- 1 tsp fresh garlic, minced
- 2 large whole wheat bread slices, toasted and torn into pieces
- 5 tbsp parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp ketchup (+ extra for topping)
- 2 tsp brown mustard
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- ½ tsp thyme
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- To cook lentils, boil 4 cups of water in a large saucepan. Add lentils, lower heat to a simmer, and cook with lid tilted for about 30 minutes. Lentils are done once they become soft enough to mash. Drain excess water from the pan.
- To cook quinoa, place ½ cup water and ¼ cup dry quinoa in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes (when quinoa is done, water should absorbed).
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 3 mini (4-inch) loaf pans with oil.
- Add oil to a small pan and sauté onions and garlic for a few minutes until softened.
- Place sautéed garlic and onions into a medium mixing bowl with the lentils and quinoa and mix well. Then add in the toasted bread pieces, parmesan cheese, eggs, ketchup, brown mustard, parsley, thyme, sea salt and pepper. Mix well.
- Place lentil mixture into the mini loaf pans, using a fork to press the mixture down. Fill each no more than halfway. Squeeze some ketchup on top of each loaf.
- Bake in oven at 350 for about 30-40 minutes. Serve warm.