Lentils, Pumpkin and Sweet Potato stew : One pot dinner
I cannot be a self respecting food blogger and not post a pumpkin recipe for that time of the year when pumpkins are omnipresent on the internet. Actually, I didn't even realise this when I made this stew for dinner. Indians don't need a time of the year to use pumpkin.
It is cooked round the year in several dishes - curries, sambars, a kootu with dals and lots more. In fact, pumpkin is such an everyday thing, that most Indian families love to hate it (familiarity breeds contempt and so on) and cannot understand what the hype hoopla over pumpkin is all about, during this time of the year in other countries.
Using pumpkin in desserts like cakes, cookies, muffins, pies etc. is not a very Indian thing, because none of the above dishes are primarily of Indian origin. There is of course a delicious Pumpkin Halwa (fudge) served in wedding feasts and other such auspicious occasions.
This stew is a healthy way to eat pumpkin and a perfect one pot dish for a chilly evening. Very little chopping and the fact that it simmers itself into a dish without much of supervision, makes it an easy post-work dinner too.
This recipe serves two but you could easily double the quantities for a larger families. It's not something I'd call a glamourous dish, but something that's surely hearty, comforting and super healthy.
Lentils, Pumpkin Sweet Potato Stew
- In a medium sized saucepan, heat the olive oil.
- Add the garlic and saute for few seconds (do not brown), add the diced pumpkin and sweet potato slices. Saute on high flame for 30 seconds.
- Reduce the flame. Drain the soaked (rehydrated) whole masoor and add to the pan. Stir for a minute or so.
- Add all the spices herbs, stir well for few seconds, add 3 cups of boiling water to this and bring to a simmer.
- Cover and let this simmer for 20 minutes or until the lentils are soft but holding their shape. Towards the end, add the tomato paste dissolved in 2 tbsp of hot water, to the stew, bring to a simmer and then remove into a bowl to serve.
- Serve hot with a slice of crusty bread or crackers or as it is.