Pumpkin Lentil Dahl for cold winter nights

When the nights are cold and dark there are few things better to stay at home with then a hot bowl of delicious eats. This pumpkin and lentil dahl is stick-to-your-ribs comforting, healthy and vegan! Full of cold-fighting foods such as ginger and turmeric, it has melt-in-your mouth pumpkin and a kick of spicy lentils. This will be keeping me warm many nights this winter.

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This morning has been one of the first that I truly felt the sting of autumn. I know most people love the change of season but I am really not looking forward to it. Winter this year will be followed by my return home to NZ, just in time for the beginning of autumn there. I am trying to soak up the last of the summer sun as it wont be in my sights until next October (oh god). After waking up to a chilly apartment, I decided to go for a walk and embrace my denial that autumn is here.

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Unfortunately the trees tell a different story.

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After returning home and finished off the wedding invitations, I began my meal prep for the week. Lately I have been in a cooking rut (when am I not) where most of our meals revolve around chili or my tofu bowl. I have a skill in presenting chili beans in different ways so that it appears like a whole new dish.  Think burritos, tacos, a bowl of chili or even a spud stuffed with leftover beans. Now seems like as good as time as any to set myself a personal goal to create something new every week. Today I set upon a pumpkin lentil dahl, because pumpkin is the saving grave of autumn!

Ingredients

– 2TB oil

– 1 chopped onion

– 1 cup chipped pumpkin

– 1 cup of chopped tomatoes (or a can of crushed)

– 2 cloves of crushed garlic

– 2 tsp chili flakes

– a 3cm wedge of freshly grated ginger

– 2 tsp cumin

– 1/2 tsp turmeric

– 1 cup of cooked lentils

Steps

– Heat the pan with oil and sauté the onion and pumpkin until golden brown.

– Add tomatoes, spices, garlic and cook for a further 4 minutes.

– Pour over lentils and a little water to help the mixture cook down. Dahl should be thick so  simmer until all the liquid is absorbed.

– Serve with yoghurt and crunchy naan for a dinner perfect on a chilly night!

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That’s one new dish to add to my repertoire – and it doesn’t even involve chili beans!

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