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Cannellini Bean Puree with Roast Parsnip & Crispy Lentils

cannelini bean puree with roast parsnip and crispy lentils

1.5 hrs

Maple roasted parsnips with cannellini bean puree and crispy lentils

This recipe from Steve Dent is vegan, gluten-free and absolutely delicious.

There are a number of different stages to this recipe, but several of them can be carried out simultaneously. They are each straightforward and worth the effort because when combined they all add something to the finished dish.

Cooking the lentils in the stock and herbs gives them a rich flavour, and roasting them adds texture and balance to this lovely dish.

Any left over crispy lentils make an unusual but delicious vegan protein snack.


  1. 4 organic parsnips
  2. 1 tbsp maple syrup
  3. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

for the cannellini bean puree

  1. 400 g can organic cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  2. 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  3. juice and zest of half a lemon
  4. pinch sea salt
  5. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

for the crispy lentils

  1. 150 g organic green lentils, rinsed and drained
  2. 500 ml vegan, gluten free vegetable stock
  3. 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  4. 2 bay leaves
  5. 1 garlic clove, unpeeled
  6. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  7. 80 ml extra virgin olive oil

for the sage oil

  1. 10 g fresh sage leaves
  2. 80 ml extra virgin olive oil

for the crispy sage leaves

  1. 20 fresh sage leaves
  2. olive oil for frying


  1. For the sage oil, bring a small pan of water to the boil. Add the 10 g of sage leaves, stir quickly to immerse them in the boiling water and then immediately drain and plunge into a bowl of ice-cold water. Drain again and dry on kitchen paper. Place the sage leaves in a blender with 80 ml of olive oil and process until smooth and combined. Filter by pouring through a muslin cloth placed over a fine sieve.
  2. Place the lentils in a large sauce pan with the vegetable stock, thyme, bay leaves and garlic. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes, or until the lentils are just tender. Drain the lentils and remove the thyme, bay leaves and garlic.
  3. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C (350°F, gas mark 4). Peel and quarter the parsnips, removing the woody stems with a sharp knife. Place in a baking tray. Whisk the maple syrup and olive oil together and pour over the parsnips. Toss to combine then place in the pre-heated oven for 30 minutes or until the parsnips are golden brown and beginning to crisp.
  4. Place the lentils in a separate baking tray. Add 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil and the sea salt. Toss to combine, then shake the tray so that the lentils are evenly spread. Place in the same oven as the parsnips and cook for 20 minutes or until the lentils are starting to crisp on the outside. Shake the tray periodically to prevent sticking. Once cooked, drain the crispy lentils on kitchen paper and set to one side.
  5. For the puree, place the cannellini beans, chopped garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest, sea salt and olive oil into a food mixer and process to a smooth puree. Set to one side.
  6. For the crispy sage leaves, pour olive oil into a pan to a depth of 1 cm. Place over a high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the sage leaves and cook for 2-3 seconds. Remove the leaves from the oil with a slotted spoon or strainer and rest on kitchen paper.
  7. To serve, place a circle of cannellini bean puree in the middle of each plate. Place a few parsnips on top of the puree. Scatter some crispy lentils around the plate. Finally, add a swirl of sage oil and a few crispy sage leaves.

Recipe & photo from Steve Dent AKA The Circus Gardener’s Kitchen