Lentils make for a delicious, versatile dish that is super easy to prepare, is a good source of plant-based protein, low in calories, and perfect for detoxing from too much Halloween candy. The acorn squash also has plenty of fiber and is a good source of vitamin C and potassium (great for balancing out too many peanut butter cups). So when you're stuffing millions of tiny candy wrappers in the trash, or just want a healthy meatless dinner, reach for this recipe - it's one of my favorites.
Spiced Lentils in Roasted Squash - serves 4
1lb green lentils
1 cup mirepoix
1 T olive oil
vegetable stock ~ about 20oz
2 bay leaves
2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp ginger powder
salt & pepper to taste
2 acorn squash
salt & pepper
Preheat oven to 400º F
Rinse the lentils well and pick them over thoroughly.
In an oven-safe pot with a lid (such as a 2 qt saucepan or a cocotte) heat one tablespoon of olive oil. Saute the mirepoix until the onions are just beginning to turn translucent. Add the lentils and combine. Add vegetable stock until the lentils are covered and there is about a quarter of an inch of stock above the line of the lentils. Add the bay leaf, curry powder and ginger powder. Cover pot with lid and place in the oven to cook about 35-45 minutes, or until lentils are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
After you place the lentils in the oven begin on the squash. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Rub with olive oil and season to taste with nutmeg, salt and pepper. Place squash on a cookie sheet and bake until tender; about 25-35 minutes.
When both squash and lentils are tender stuff the squash with the lentils and serve with a fresh green salad. You will have leftover lentils. This is on purpose since these are great to bring to work the next day with your favorite vegetables or you can warm them with another pint+ of vegetable stock and some chopped tomato for a quick 'n easy lentil soup. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve with buttered garlic toast.
Of course, if you're still pining for something a little rich you can pair the lentils with a roasted Cornish hen. Here they are with an herb cream sauce made with pan juices and Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey Liqueur.