Jamie Oliver's veggie bolognese, loadsa veg, lentils & parmesan

Jamie Oliver's veggie bolognese, loadsa veg, lentils & parmesan

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Embracing copper-rich lentils here instead of minced beef still gives us a nice hit of protein, ups our fibre intake, and also lowers the sat-fat levels we would usually find in a bolognese.

Ingredients (Serves 6)
Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes

  • 20 g dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 large red onions
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Olive oil
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1 fresh bay leaf
  • 100 ml Chianti
  • 1 x 400 g tin green lentils
  • 2 x 400 g tins plum tomatoes
  • 450 g dried wholewheat spaghetti
  • ½ bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley (15 g)
  • 100 g Parmesan cheese


In a small bowl, just cover the porcini with boiling kettle water to rehydrate them. Peel the onions, garlic and carrots, trim the celery and finely chop it all with the rosemary leaves. Place a large casserole pan on a medium-low heat with 1 tablespoon of oil, then add the chopped veg, rosemary and the bay. Cook with a lid on for 20 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally.
Scoop out and finely chop the porcini and add to the pan with the soaking water, leaving any gritty bits behind. Turn the heat up to medium-high, pour in the Chianti, then leave to cook away. Tip in the lentils (juice and all), and the tomatoes, breaking them up with a wooden spoon. Half-fill each tomato tin with water, swirl around and pour into the pan. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a medium-low heat and simmer for 35 minutes, or until thick and delicious. Taste and season to perfection.

Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti in a large pan of boiling salted water according to the packet instructions, then drain, reserving a mugful of cooking water. Toss the spaghetti through the bolognese, loosening with a little reserved water, if needed. Finely chop the top leafy half of the parsley, finely grate over most of the Parmesan and stir both through the pasta, then divide between your plates, grate over the rest of the Parmesan and tuck in.

Extract from Super Food Family Classics by Jamie Oliver. Food Photography by Jamie Oliver; portrait photography by Paul Stuart, Pubished by Micheal Joseph on 14 July 2016, RRP $55.00.

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