Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Mozzarella Stuffed Meat-less Loaf --- and an Update on my Life

My excuse for infrequent posts is always because I'm busy being busy. But I am! For anyone who didn't know, I know have a full time teaching job at St. Aloysius Catholic School in Springfield as the preschool-8th grade art teacher AND...drumroll.... Jr. High ENGLISH. I know, yikes! It's all very new, but that is never a bad thing. I ALSO have a new part time job at a new restaurant in Springfield called Engrained Brewing Company. I've never been a waitress before, its definitely not easy. I have a whole new respect for servers... but it is also very fun, the people I work with are a blast, and it's pretty good money. The free beers every time you work is a nice perk too.

We brew our own beer at Engrained, and most, if not all, the food comes from local farmers. The only problem is that Chef LOVES his meat, and so the menu is primarily meat. He has some great ideas though, and I often find myself mimicking his recipes.... like his honey basil salad dressing, the horseshoe with cheese sauce, and the Mozzarella Stuffed Meatloaf (below). My recipe is a copy-cat mix from this recipe at "Oh She Glows" and what I see Chef make at Engrained.

PS: if you want to check out Engrained and are a vegan, come check it out. We do have some great salads, a daily "vegan special", and you can even order a portobello burger on most days--- the cooks are very accommodating. :)

Mozzarella stuffed Meat-less Loaf

Yield: 8 thick slices

  • 1 cup dry lentils
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 TBS ground flax seed
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup sweet onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup grated sweet potato
  • 1 medium carrot, grated
  • 1/3 of an apple, peeled, grated (makes 1/3 cup grated apple)
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 3/4 cup raw toasted walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • Chopped parsley for garnish
  • 1/3 cup regular oats, ground into a flour (use GF oats for gluten-free option)
  • 1 tbsp ground flax seed
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs (I used 3 slices of a GF brown rice bread)
  • 1 cup vegan mozzarella cheese ( I would suggest Daiya shreds, which is not what I used but I will in the future.... Daiya always does the trick).
  • Ketchup

  1. In a medium sized pot, add 3 cups of water and a vegetable bouillon cube and boil water until cube is dissolved. Alternatively, you can also use already prepared veggie stock. Rinse lentils and pick over being sure to remove any small pebbles that may be in the mix. Add lentils, bring to boil, and reduce heat to low and simmer until liquid is absorbed and lentils are tender (about 40 minutes). Be sure to stir the lentils frequently so they do not stick to the bottom of the pot. Once the lentils are cooked, remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F and line a loaf pan with parchment so that parchment paper hangs over the edges by 2 inches.
  3. Mix 3 tbsp of ground flax with 1/2 cup warm water and stir well. Set aside for at least 5-10 minutes so it can gel up (this is your "flax egg")/
  4. In a large skillet over medium heat, sauté onion and minced garlic for about 5 minutes on low-medium heat, being careful not to burn. After the onions are tender, add carrot and potato and sauté for 2-3 minutes over low heat. Add grated apple, raisins, and chopped walnuts and sauté another minute or two.  Add thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and set aside.
  5. Place bread and oatmeal in a food processor and process until it becomes close to a powder. 
  6. Once the lentils are cooled, take 3/4 of the lentils and place into food processor. Process until mostly smooth (some small lentils will remain). Now take the processed lentils and scoop into a large bowl. Add in the remaining 1/4 of non-processed lentils and place into bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, flax egg, veggie mixture, oat flour, and ground flax seed. Stir well with a spoon and then remove the spoon and mix well with your hands, pressing it through your fingers. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.
  7. Dump 1/3 the mixture into your loaf pan and spread out with a spoon. Now take your hands and press the mixture firmly and evenly into the pan. Add 1/2 cup of daiya in a even layer on top. Repeat this again, and finish off the top with the last 1/3 of the lentil mixture. Top with a thin layer of ketchup. 
  8.  Bake uncovered 45 minutes at 350F.

Cool for about 10-15 minutes, sprinkle with parsley, and serve. Serves about 8 thick slices.

That's all for now! Can't wait to try something else. If you are in the mood for a Fall treat, you should check out these recipes:
Butternut Squash and Apple Soup
 Pumpkin Lasagna
Stuffed Acorn Squash
Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili


  1. Thanks so much for posting! I love all of your recipe ideas!! :) I'll have to give this a try!! It's always fun to see all of your unique vegan ideas-We love being vegan and are always looking for something new :)

  2. Hey thank you! It's nice to know there are actually people reading :)