Thursday, December 16, 2010

"Tomato Pasta Sauce" A.K.A. Lentil and Tomato Sauce

This is a unexpected twist on pasta sauce. As long as your little one will eat pasta with plain tomato sauce, chances are he will eat this one. Another thing that I find that helps with our monster is to let him select the shape of the noodles that I am going to serve. Also, I don't overdo it with sauce for him -- just enough to coat the noodles.

"Tomato Pasta Sauce" A.K.A. Lentil and Tomato Sauce (makes 4 adult size servings)


1/2 jar Tomato and Basil pasta sauce (700mL Jar) - I like to use the President Choice Organic
3/4 cup dried red lentils** (always sort through lentils to make sure they do not have any rocks hiding in them and wash before cooking)
2 1/2 cup water
1 cup shredded carrots (packed; approximately one very large carrot)
2 tsp dried onion flakes
2 tbsp fresh or frozen rosemary (chopped)

Combine all ingredients in large saucepan; mix; then bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; cover and cook for approximately 15 minutes until lentils are tender - stir frequently. It is very important that you stir the sauce every 3 minutes or so as it will stick to the bottom and burn if you do not. If the lentils are not tender and the sauce seems to be too thick add a little bit of hot water and continue to cook.

While sauce is cooking, cook (as per the package's direction) your child's favourite pasta. Try to select a whole grain pasta, as it is healthier for you. If your little one is used to white pasta get the same-shaped pasted in both whole grain and white and mix the two. Starting with 1/4 whole grain to 3/4 white then slowly bring up the quantity of whole grain to 100%.

For those of you that have kids that are not too picky you can serve the sauce as is on your favourite cooked pasta.

For the rest of us the trick to get it into your kids is once the sauce is cooked puree it with your immersion blender until smooth. It now looks pretty much like any plain tomato pasta sauce.

I also wanted to note that this sauce makes a great pizza sauce; we had left over sauce after supper and well tomorrow I am making pizza dough and we will have cheese pizza with this sauce for supper.

Nutritional Information in full batch:
approximately 2 servings of meat alternatives
approximately 5 servings of vegetables
lentils are a very good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber; they are also high in folate, magnesium, iron and protein.

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