Veganuary Day 7: Red Lentil Risotto

It’s back to school tomorrow so we’re beating the January blues with a family meal and an early night, ready to start the week tomorrow. Risotto usually meets with approval from everyone but despite it being packed full of vegetables, I’m also adding lentils to increase protein levels too. This oven-baked risotto is a comforting and soul warming version of the classic Italian staple and hopefully we’ll be ready to face the challenges that lie ahead in the morning.

Ingredients:

  • 250g arborio risotto rice
  • 100g red lentils 
  • 1 x onion, finely chopped 
  • 1 x yellow pepper, diced
  • 2 x garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes 
  • 600ml veg stock
  • 1 x tsp thyme
  • 1 x red chilli, finely sliced
  • Splash of Tabasco 
  • 2 x tbsp nutritional yeast flakes (optional)
  • A couple of handfuls of rocket 
  • Small bunch of basil, roughly chopped

In a large oven-proof casserole pot, cook the onion gently in olive oil over a moderate heat for a few minutes, then add the pepper for another minute.

Add the rice, lentils and garlic and stir until coated in the oil and the rice becomes translucent.

Pour in the stock, tinned tomatoes, thyme, chilli, Tabasco and nutritional yeast. Place the lid on the pot and place in the oven at 200C for 25-30 minutes, stirring in the rocket for the final 5 minutes of cooking time.

Garnish with basil to serve and add black olives if you wish. 

The lentils made this dish feel slightly more virtuous than my usual risotto dishes and The Man really enjoyed it (even though he did add chicken and chorizo to his).

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