Lentils contain fiber and complex carbohydrates helping to stabilize blood sugar and increase energy. They are a good source of protein, iron, folate, and magnesium, making them a heart healthy food. The high levels of soluble fiber mean lentils may help lower cholesterol, reducing the risk of heart disease. They are also thought to be good for digestive health, helping to prevent constipation and digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome.
Creamy homemade tomato sauce is one of my all-time favorite things to make. The natural earthy flavor of the lentils pairs so nicely with the sweet, creamy flavor of the tomato sauce. If you love a little bit of heat, the addition of the jalapeno and garlic rounds off the dish. I hope you enjoy every bite of this tremendously healthy and ultra-delicious dish!
Lentils in a Creamy Homemade Tomato Sauce
2 cups cooked or canned green lentils, rinsed & drained
½ tsp. + ½ tsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 large shallot, diced
1 jalapeno, diced (optional)
1 tsp. + 1/8 tsp. sea salt, divided
½ tsp. + 1/8 tsp. pepper, divided
¼ cup raw cashews
½ cup water
1 cup crushed tomatoes with basil (I used a can of Muir Glen Organic Crushed Tomatoes with Basil)
2 cloves garlic, minced
If using dried lentils, cook according to package instructions, drain and set aside. For canned lentils rinse with water and drain.
In a medium sauce pan over medium heat add ½ tsp. extra virgin olive oil. Add diced shallots and jalapeno (optional). Season with a pinch of salt and pepper (about 1/8 tsp. of each).
Sauté approximately 5 minutes until translucent.
While shallots are sautéing make cashew cream by combing cashews and ½ cup water in a high powered blender, blend for 1 minute. Set aside.
Turn heat to medium-low, add crushed tomatoes, ½ tsp. extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic, cashew cream, 1 tsp. sea salt and ½ tsp. pepper, stir. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add lentils to homemade tomato sauce. Stir and heat until warmed through.
Taste and season, if needed.
With love, gratitude and heart healthy hugs,