Despite our global food delivery system, most of my vegan friends are a little grumpy due to a lack of fresh, vibrant summer vegetables at this time of year. This high protein Walnut Lentil Pâté is one of our favorite vegan recipes that we like to share to add a little za za zoo to any vegans (or otherwise) menu. We’ve been using black lentils, which are sometimes called Beluga. They are all über-trendy these days, and their jet black color offers a little international mystery to this dish.
Lentils derive their deep, dark hue from high concentrations of anthocyanins, the very same antioxidants found in blue-purple fruits like blueberries, plums, and cherries. FYI anthocyanins are potent compounds that are currently being investigated for their memory-boosting and cancer-fighting properties. Lentils are also an excellent source of plant protein, 50 gram/cup and fiber, 59 gram per cup—not to mention iron, magnesium and vitamin B6.
¾ cup raw walnuts 1 cup cooked lentils, cooked (I like beluga)
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 T. tamari
2 T. lemon juice
1 bay leaf
¼ cup best quality extra virgin olive oil
Salt + fresh ground pepper to taste Smoked paprika to taste
1. In a medium frying pan, drizzle about 2 tablespoons of olive oil and place over medium heat. Add onions and the bay leaf, reduce heat to low and cook until soft and deeply caramelized, about 15 minutes, stirring every few minutes. Remove bay leaf and season the onions with salt and pepper to taste.
2. Toast walnuts in a large skillet on medium high for 4-5 minutes until golden brown. Remove from skillet and let cool.
3. Place lentils, walnuts and onions in a blender. Add tamari, lemon juice and about 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Blend until almost creamy, but still has a little crunch. Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with smoked paprika to your liking.
Stores well in the refrigerator for up to one week.