CHILDREN’S PEA AND LENTIL BOLOGNESE WITH A MUMMY TOO
Emily Leary, blogger at A Mummy Too, is back with a delicious pasta dish that’s always a winner with her own children.
This simple, nutrient-packed, delicious pasta dish can be prepared and on the table in under 30 minutes, and uses ingredients you’ve probably already got in the cupboard.
It’s always a huge hit whenever I make it, and with just one tin of tomatoes, you’ll have enough for at least 4 children’s portions.
What you’ll need
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 tsp sage
- 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
- pinch salt and pepper
- 100g red split lentils
- 50g frozen garden peas
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 150ml water
- 1 tsp soft brown sugar
- Pasta of your choice
What to do
- Warm the oil in a non-stick pan, then throw in the onion, sage, salt and pepper. Fry gently until soft.
- Add the lentils and peas and fry for another couple of minutes.
- Stir in the tomatoes, tomato puree, sugar and 150ml of water.
- Bring to the boil and then turn down to a simmer, cover and leave to cook for 15-20 minutes until the lentils are just soft, but not dissolved.
- Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the packet instructions, transferring a ladleful of the cooking water to the bolognese just before you drain the pasta (stir through to help loosen the mixture).
- Serve the pasta onto plates and top with the lentils.
I hope you’ll give this easy, delicious recipe a try. As well as being yummy, it’s also full of good stuff.
Red lentils have so many health benefits for kids. They’re an excellent low-fat source of protein – brilliant for vegetarian diets and kids who aren’t keen on meat – and they’re packed with vitamins and minerals.
Lentils also contain insoluble fibre, which helps keep little tummies working efficiently, and they’re great from an energy point of view too, providing a steady source rather than a spike. Add to that their antioxidant properties and you’re looking at a powerful little pulse.
The humble garden pea is actually a bit of a powerhouse too when it comes to kids’ nutrition. Peas have antioxidant properties, and their protein and fibre content regulates the pace of digestion, which in turn maintains steady blood sugar levels. They’re also packed with vitamins and minerals and a great source of omega-3 fats.
As you can see, I used wholemeal pasta for this, which is made from – you guessed it – the whole grain. This makes it a complex carbohydrate, which releases energy more slowly than white pasta and keeps kids fueled at a much steadier pace. Wholemeal pasta is also higher in nutrients and beneficial fibre than white pasta, so it’s a great choice for all the family.