Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Lentil and beef bolognese.

My children are fab at eating vegetables and fruit but they have some very odd fussiness when it comes to food. I often find I end up having to cook different things for everyone which is a real pain in the backside. Squidge won’t eat red things, Bob's funny with textures, I'm not a big meat lover and Dude's not a big veg/pulse lover (though he'll try everything I make and has been suprised once or twice by liking something he thought he wouldn't!)....ok, it's not just the kids!

I don’t really have any go to meals that everyone will eat, although I have managed to get Bob and Dude to eat lentil and beef bolognese – just didn’t tell Bob there were lentils in otherwise it would have been left!  Just working on the toddler now, I just serve her a small serving to the side of her plain pasta and some steamed broccoli as she will definitely eat that if not over cooked (I have been guilty of that!)  She has progressed to poking it with her spoon so it is a start.  Definitely helps to serve it whilst sat at the table and eating as a family – they really do learn by copying at this age (she is two).

It's quite cheap to make (pulses are much cheaper than meat and can make the meat you do use go that little bit further), freezes well,  all natural ingredients – no additives  (I serve my kids and husband processed stuff from the freezer more times than I care to admit so I am judging no one if you use a jar of pre-made sauce to make your bolognese – this just works for us as it is store cupboard supplies).

Red Lentil and Beef Bolognese


Olive Oil - 1 tbsp
Garlic - 2 cloves, chopped finely
Red Onion - 1/2, diced
Carrot - 1, diced
Celery - 1 stalk, sliced finely
Beef mince - 350g
Red Lentils - 1/2 cup
beef stock, 800 ml
2 tins of chopped tomatoes
Tomato Puree - 1tbsp
Mixed herbs - 1 heaped tsp
Salt and Pepper to taste


  • On a low heat, gently saute the onion, garlic, celery and carrot in the olive oil for about 5 minutes, until soft.
  • Add the mince to the pan and turn the heat up to medium.  Quickly brown mince.
  • Add stock and lentils and stir and then bring to a rapid boil.
  • Reduce heat and put lid on and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Add tomatoes, tomato puree, herbs, salt and peppr and replace lid. Simmer for further five minutes. 
  • Remove lid, and continue to simmer for about 15/20 minutes until sauce is thickened. 
  • Give a quick stir, serve with spaghetti and garlic bread.


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