walnut lentil pate

Inspired by a rich, complexly-flavored dish at Angelica's Kitchen in New York City. Use as a veggie dip, sandwich spread, or spread on slices of sourdough bread, broil for about one or two minutes, and serve warm. 

Time: 45 minutes
Makes 1.5-2 cups

1/2 c dried French (green) lentils, preferably soaked
bay leaves
1 cup walnuts (or substitute pecans)
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
1 tbs coconut oil
1T mirim
1T umeboshi paste (salty and sour, so if you need to sub use pickled vegetables
1 T miso
1T dried basil or ½ cup fresh basil, mint, or cilantro

Place lentils in a saucepan with bay leaves and enough water to cover by 3 cm. Bring to boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 30 to 40 minutes.

Saute the onions and garlic in oil in a skillet over a medium heat, stirring often, until lightly browned, about 10-15 minutes.

Combine the walnuts, lentils, onion mixture, mirim, umeboshi, and miso in a food processor/blender and puree until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings. Add olive oil or non-dairy milk to thin down if needed. If using fresh herbs, add at the end and pulse until they are coarsely chopped but not fully homogenized.

You can serve immediately, but it improves upon chilling for several hours.

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