Bolognese ragu is a very versatile sauce, and this version by Rachel Jamison is completely plant based.
- 1 cup brown or green lentils (or use tinned)
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 4 large chunks
- 2 cups water
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- ½ small onion, roughly chopped
- 1 red pepper, roughly chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 2 x 400g tins of crushed tomatoes
- 1.5 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tbsp dried basil
- ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
- 3 cups loosely packed spinach leaves
- ½ cup quinoa, rinsed
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- Salt and pepper
- Grated vegan parmesan cheese
In a medium sized saucepan put the lentils, carrots and water. Bring to the boil over a high heat and then cover and reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes or until the carrots are fork tender and the lentils are cooked. If using tinned lentils cook the carrots, drain and then add the lentils.
In a deep frying pan, heat the oil over a medium heat. Sauté the onions for about 3 minutes until they become translucent. Add the red peppers and garlic and sauté for another minute or so.
Put the tomatoes in a blender or food processor; add the sautéed vegetables, garlic, oregano, basil, red pepper flakes and spinach. Add the cooked carrots but reserve the lentils. Puree until smooth.
Put the lentils, balsamic vinegar and quinoa into the frying pan you sautéed the vegetables, scrape any of the brown bits off the bottom of the pan. Add the pureed tomato mixture and bring back to a simmer. Cook over a low heat for about 30 minutes until the white tails show on the quinoa.
Meanwhile cook your pasta according to the instructions on the packet. Drain and serve with the Bolognese sauce.