This vegetarian dish is packed full of fibre and protein to fill you up
Preheat the oven to 190C/Gas mark 5
Put the lentils and 500ml water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Once it’s boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes – the lentils shouldn’t be ‘mushy’ at this stage – then drain the lentils and set aside.
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and grated carrot and sauté for five minutes. Next, add the garlic, courgette, chopped tomatoes, vegetable stock and dried herbs and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Take the pan off the heat and add the chopped spinach and cooked lentils. Season with freshly ground pepper and a pinch of salt.
Place the pepper halves cut-side up on a lightly greased baking tray and fill the peppers with the lentil mixture, distributing it evenly. Squeeze fresh lemon juice over the tops, then cover with kitchen foil and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes.
Meanwhile, to make the topping, heat the olive oil in a small pan over a medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs and thyme and cook for a few minutes until the breadcrumbs are well coated. Add the lemon zest and parsley, then take off the heat and set aside.
After 25–30 minutes, uncover the peppers and sprinkle them with the toppings. Bake uncovered for a further 15 minutes until the top is golden brown and the peppers are soft. Serve immediately.
This recipe is taken from The Secret Ingredient by Sally Bee (£14.99, Harper Nonfiction)