Pumpkin, Red Lentil and Coconut Curry
For me as an American, pumpkins are more often associated with Halloween jack-o’-lanterns and Thanksgiving pumpkin pie than savoury stews, so this recipe was definitely an experiment for me. I thought I’d give it a try since there are so many pumpkins available right now in the markets and I’m always looking for ways to cut down on meat and introduce more healthy vegetarian meals to my family.
This recipe is based on one I encountered on the Hemsley & Hemsley website. Their version calls for butternut squash but I made it with pumpkin instead. I’m pleased to say, it was really delicious…even my super fussy daughter ate it happily, and that’s saying something.
This stew is healthy as well as tasty, combining beta-carotene rich pumpkin and seasonal pomegranate with protein laden lentils and wonderfully creamy coconut. It’s a great ‘one pot’ meal that doesn’t take long to cook and is very satisfying.
- 3 onions, finely chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 3 inches of ginger, peeled and finely shredded
- 2 tbsps coconut oil
- 450g pumpkin, peeled and cut into 3cm cubes
- 400ml coconut milk
- 1 litre vegetable stock
- 250g red lentils
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 200g spinach, shredded
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 lime, juiced lime
- 100g fresh coarsely chopped coriander
- 1/4 cup fresh pomegranate seeds
- optional: 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or chilli flakes
Heat the coconut oil in a pot until it melts. Add onions, garlic and ginger. Cook until onions are translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
Add cubed pumpkin, coconut milk and stock to pot and cook for a further 10 minutes on low to medium heat.
Stir in the red lentils, black pepper, turmeric and chilli, if using. Let simmer for a further 15-20 minutes until the lentils are soft and the pumpkin is tender. If the stew looks a bit too dry at this stage, you can add a bit more vegetable stock to thin it out.
Once everything is cooked through, take the pot off the heat and stir in the spinach, salt, coriander and lime juice.
Serve garnished with the fresh pomegranate seeds.