Traditionally, I am not a fan of “loaf” of any kind. I usually find them a bit underwhelming. So, I felt challenged to create a vegan lentil loaf recipe that was flavorful and savory. And this mushroom lentil loaf does just that!
Dried porcini mushrooms bring so much flavor. They work so well with the lentils, thyme, sherry vinegar and nuts. In the end, it’s a moist, delicious vegan lentil loaf that just wants to be covered in gravy.
This recipe works well for fall, winter, Thanksgiving, holidays or any time you want homemade vegan lentil loaf. It takes a little time to pull off, but it is easy to do and really tasty!
- ・No oat flour? If you have access to a high speed blender, like a Vitamix, add rolled oats to it and blend until the oats are a powder form.
- ・If your porcini mushrooms are not thinly sliced, they will take longer to reconstitute. Speed up the process by soaking them in boiling water.
Vegan Lentil Loaf with Porcini Mushrooms, Walnuts and Cashews
½ ounce package of thinly sliced dried porcini mushrooms, rinsed very well to remove any grit, sand or dirt (see note above)
½ cup lukewarm water
1½ cups dried green lentils, rinsed and sorted
4 cups water
1 tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1 cup raw walnuts, halves and pieces
1 cup raw whole cashews
2 Tbsp sherry vinegar
¼ cup + 2 Tbsp reduced sodium soy sauce (OR gluten free tamari)
1 Tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt
1½ cups finely chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1 tsp dry rubbed sage
1 tsp dried marjoram
3 Tbsp flax seed meal
½ cup oat flour (OR ½ cup breadcrumbs)
Black pepper, to taste
1. First, you’ll prepare the mushrooms for the vegan lentil loaf. In a medium mixing bowl, add thinly sliced dried porcini mushrooms and the lukewarm water. Allow to soak for 30 minutes or until they are plump, pliable and the water has darkened. Drain the mushrooms. Then, rinse them under water to remove any additional grit or debris.
2. In a medium saucepan, add the reconstituted porcini mushrooms, green lentils, 4 cups water, dried thyme and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, turn down to low, and cover with a lid. Boil for ~20 minutes or until the lentils are soft and completely cooked through. Drain off any excess liquid and remove the bay leaf. Set the pot of cooked lentils aside.
3. In a food processor, add 1 cup of the cooked lentils and porcini mushrooms, the walnuts, cashews, sherry vinegar and ¼ cup reduced sodium soy sauce. Blend until it forms a thick paste, but still has some recognizable bits of nuts. Spoon into a large mixing bowl, and set aside.
4. Preheat the oven to 375º F. Grease a loaf pan. Set aside.
5. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add 1 Tbsp olive oil, ½ tsp salt and the onions. Sauté for ~7 minutes or until the onions are golden and soft.
6. Add the garlic, carrots and celery. Stir around for ~5 minutes or until the carrots are soft. Add the sage, marjoram, and black pepper (to taste). Sauté another minute.
7. In the large mixing bowl (with the nuts mixture from the food processor), add the remaining cooked lentils and mushrooms, the contents of the skillet (onions, carrots, celery), the flax seed meal, oat flour, and 2 Tbsp reduced sodium soy sauce.
8. Combine everything in the large mixing bowl together. Taste and make adjustments to the flavor, if necessary (more soy sauce? more sherry vinegar?).
9. Press into the greased loaf pan. Cover with aluminum foil, and bake at 375º F for 35 minutes. Remove the foil. Bake at 375º F for an additional 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven, and allow to cool for 20 minutes before slicing. Serve this vegan lentil loaf with your favorite gravy.