Thursday, 19 November 2009

Mexican Pumpkin Lentil & Peanut stew

The weather has taken a turn for the cold-and-wet, so today's recipe is for something thick, hearty & warming. Nothing beats the Dear-Gods-It's-Late-November-Already* blues than comforting stodge.

Pumpkin, Lentil & Peanut Stew
(Serves 4, or two greedy foxes, with some leftover for lunch with paprika potato wedges)

900g/2lb Squash (butternut, Pumpkin, whatever you still have around) peeled, deseeded & chopped into chunks
225g/8oz red lentils
225g/8oz tomatoes, peeled & chopped (or 1 can of chopped tomatoes)
1 ltr vegetable stock
2 heaped tbs peanut butter
1 red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 red chilli, chopped
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika

In a large pan, fry the onion in a little oil until it goes translucent (about 5 minutes), add the garlic & chilli & fry for another minute. Add the cumin & paprika, stir and add the tomatoes. Add the lentils and vegetable stock & bring to the boil. Cover (lest the lentil swamp coat your kitchen in tomato goo) and simmer for about 15 minutes. Check on it and give it the occasional stir, even though it will spit at you. Add the chopped squash & season with salt & pepper. Cover and simmer for 10 more minutes. Stir in the peanut putter & simmer for another 5 minutes. You may need to add a little more stock if the mixture is too thick for your liking (Me, I love them thick. If you need to chisel it out in chunks, it's perfect). Serve with toasted peanuts, or a dollop of sour cream, or some chopped avocado & lime juice, or anything else that takes your fancy.
This one is served with slices of Pumpkin Chilli Cornbread.

Om nom nom!

*But that means it's almost December, it's almost - gasp - Christmas!