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Top Five Vegetarian Lunchbox Meals - Millet Loaf

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Contributor:
Sabine Schneider
Sabine Schneider

Millet Loaf
This loaf is one of my favourite transportable lunches. It tastes good warm or cold and makes a no-mess meal. That it's also good for you is a bonus.

 Millet is a staple food grain for millions of people in Africa and Asia. It has a nutty flavour and contains many essential nutrients. Millet is a good source of plant protein, contains valuable amounts of fibre, is especially high in iron, phosporous, magnesium and potassium. It also contains vitamins of the B-complex, such as nicotinamide, thiamin and riboflavin. Millet is easily digested so it doesn't sink to the bottom of your stomach weighing a tonne and its mild flavour is a favourite with kids.

1 cup millet
3 cups vegetable stock
½ cup sunflower seeds
1 onion, peeled
2 carrots, cleaned or peeled
 
optional: up to ½ cup chopped leftover vegetables
 
½ cup rolled oats
1 cup breadcrumbs
½ cup smooth peanut butter
4 tbsp hot water
½ cup tomato sauce
3 tbsp soy sauce
3 or 4 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
a good pinch of dried oregano
pepper and salt to taste
 
¼ cup tomato sauce for topping
 
Line a large loaf tin (or a couple of small ones) with baking paper. At least line the bottom and two sides – it makes it easier to get the loaf out of the pan.
 
Place a large, non-stick frypan on a medium heat, add millet grains and roast for a few minutes. Take off the heat when the grains start to get tiny golden specks. Add stock, put a lid on the pan and turn heat to low. Let simmer for 20 minutes. Then turn off the element.

In the meantime, chop onion, grate carrot, crush garlic and measure out all the other ingredients.

When the millet is cooked, fluff it up with a fork and transfer it to a bowl.

Add sunflower seeds to the frypan and roast on medium heat for a couple of minutes until you can smell their aroma. Add seeds to millet and set aside.

 
Add oil to the frypan, then add onion, carrots and garlic. Saute for five minutes or until onions are translucent, but not brown. The carrots should still be firm.

Add the millet/sunflower mix, rolled oats, breadcrumbs, herbs and seasoning. Stir to combine.

 
Place peanut butter into a little bowl together with hot water, tomato sauce and soy sauce. Stir until smooth and then add to the millet mix. Stir well until combined.
 
Fill your loaf tin with the mixture, pressing down firmly with a spoon to compact mixture and smooth top.
 
Mix remaining quantity of tomato sauce with a tbsp of water and spread over the top of your loaf.
 
Place in a cold oven, turn oven on (180deg). Use top and bottom element as well as the fan (if your oven has fan bake). Bake for 45 minutes or until tomato sauce topping is a deep brown and glossy. Turn off heat and leave loaf in the oven for another 15 minutes. Then take it out and let it sit until the tin is cool enough to handle. Carefully turn the loaf out of the tin and on to a cooling rack. Cut into slices and serve with a salad and/or yogurt sauce.
 
This loaf can be eaten warm or cold. Once cold it handles transport well and is suitable for re-heating (either microwave or fry in pan). It keeps in the fridge for a week and can be frozen for up to three months. One loaf makes at least 8 slices.
 

 

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