Recipe: Beef and Lentil Rescue Remedy

So called because it’s so easy to make, you can freeze Beef and Lentil Rescue Remedy and bring it out when you have no time to spare. The nutty, delicious lentils add extra fibre and flavour to an already delicious dish. Use any type of pasta that catches sauce well – like shell pasta, ribbed penne, or orecchiette.

Serves 4–6


  • 500 g Beef Mince
  • 1 large Onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic, crushed
  • ½ cup Red Wine (optional)
  • 400 g can Diced Tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 400 g can Lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 1 tbsp dried Oregano
  • 1 tbsp dried Basil
  • ¼ tsp Nutmeg
  • fresh Parsley or Basil, finely chopped


Heat olive or vegetable oil in a frying-pan and cook onion and garlic together until soft and transparent. Add beef mince and brown well, breaking up any large pieces. Add wine, if using (preferably, use the wine you will be drinking with the meal). As it hits the pan there should be a hiss. The alcohol will evaporate and leave the rich warming flavour of the wine.

Add tomatoes, tomato paste, lentils, dried herbs and nutmeg. Combine well and let simmer for at least 15–20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

While the sauce is simmering, cook your pasta of choice in a large pan of salted water. Cook according to instructions, then drain when it’s al dente (firm to the bite).

Toss sauce through the pasta and serve garnished liberally with fresh parsley or basil.
If freezing for later use, just freeze the sauce. While the sauce is defrosting in the microwave, you can cook your pasta. Dinner will be ready in 10 minutes flat!

Copyright Notice
: An extract from Minced with photography by Alan Gillard. Published by Penguin Group NZ. Copyright © Sue Hamilton and Dana Alexander, 2010. RRP $35.00. Available at all good booksellers nationwide.