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So Not Meatloaf

My daughter Joanna adapted this recipe from one she found at Forks Over Knives, a website offering wonderful plant-based recipes. This vegan recipe is so delicious and warming. It would be great in a sandwich, too. In the spirit of cooking with what we’ve got in our pantry, I’ll let you know what ingredients she had to omit or change. The original recipe is called a lentil “meatloaf,” but that sounds disgusting to me on so many levels. And so, I now present to you:

Joanna’s Lentil Terrine with Tomato Sauce


  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1 cup red lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 2 fresh poblano chile peppers, seeded and chopped (omitted)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1½ teaspoons chopped fresh Mexican oregano (Joanna used half that much, dried)
  • 2 cups cooked short grain brown rice
  • ¼ cup cornmeal (omitted)
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro (omitted)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice (or 1 tablespoon sriracha or other hot sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 14.5-oz. can fire-roasted (or not) tomatoes, undrained
  • 4 dates, pitted, soaked in hot water
  • 1 tablespoon smoked (or not) paprika
  • ½ teaspoon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a 9×5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a skillet combine onions, lentils, poblanos, garlic, and oregano. Stir in 1½ cups water. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 20 minutes or until lentils are tender and water is absorbed, stirring occasionally. Stir in rice, cornmeal, cilantro, lime juice, and salt. Lightly pat mixture into the prepared loaf pan; flatten top.
  3. For the sauce, in a blender (or food processor, if you don’t have a blender), combine tomatoes, dates, paprika, mustard, vinegar, and ½ cup water. Cover and blend until smooth. Transfer to a saucepan. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes or until slightly thick.
  4. Spoon ¾ cup of the sauce over loaf. Bake 30 to 40 minutes or until sauce looks dark and dry. Cool on a wire rack (if you have one) for 15 minutes. Slice loaf and serve with the remaining sauce.