Work in progress. Will freeze this, then add mushrooms when it's time to serve unexpected guests. But for you, here's the recipe:
extra-virgin olive oil 4 tbsp
brown onion 1, chopped
garlic cloves 4, finely chopped
small beetroot 8, peeled and quartered
carrots 6, sliced into large pieces
bay leaves 3
thyme 2 sprigs
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
tomato purée 2 tbsp
red wine (use vegan wine if you like) 250ml
vegetable stock 500ml
puy lentils 400g
portobello mushrooms 2-3, sliced
crimini mushrooms 10
pearl onions 10, peeled
arrowroot 2 tsp, dissolved in 2 tbsp water
thyme a few sprigs, to garnish
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a thick-bottomed saucepan over a medium heat. Stir in the onion and garlic and sauté until soft. Toss the beetroot, carrots, bay leaves, thyme and salt and pepper into the pan and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Stir in the tomato purée, red wine and stock and simmer on a low heat for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, rinse the lentils under running water. Bring 1 litre of water and the lentils to the boil. Lower the heat to medium and simmer gently for 15-20 minutes. When almost cooked, add a pinch of salt. Drain off any excess water, cover and set aside.
Heat the rest of the olive oil in a large frying pan, lower the heat and sear the mushrooms and pearl onions, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden. Season to taste and set aside.
Taste the stew and add more wine, stock or herbs if you like. Add the arrowroot mixture. Stir gently until thickened and clear. Add the mushrooms and onions and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs, spoon the stew and lentils into four bowls, and sprinkle with the fresh thyme.
From The Green Kitchen by David Frenkiel and Luise Vindahl