I haven’t been posting many healthy recipesrecently after my big health drive back in January. Although I hate to admit it, I have slipped somewhat on the whole healthy eating front. I definitely feel the need to get back on track – luckily the lovely weather is making me crave salads and vegetables.
Not so luckily I also feel an immense urge to bakeand experiment with less than healthful ingredients. Hopefully the two can balance each other out with some added exercise on the side!
This recipe was inspired by the Hemsley & Hemsley The Art of Eating Well book I bought recently. I was fully prepared to dislike this book by the way – I always feel slightly distrustful of any book that comes with a lot of hype and publicity behind it.
But despite some phrasing that gets under my skin, most of the recipes look both delicious and healthy. I can’t say I will ever make my own bone broth however – no matter the health benefits.
This lamb, lentil and squash stew was great for using up all the odds and ends in the fridge and freezer. The only thing to remember is to soak the green lentils overnight – though I suppose you could used tinned lentils as a shortcut.
The lamb is completely optional – I had some in the freezer that needed to be used so I chucked it in! Replace any of the vegetables with other seasonal options. This recipe makes a lot of stew – serve plain or with some bulgur wheat or couscous.
Lamb, lentil and squash stew
- 400 g | 14oz green lentils soaked overnight with 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 300 g | 10.5 oz lamb mince leave out for vegetarian version
- About 1 litre 4 cups hot vegetable stock, more if needed
- 3 large carrots diced
- 3 celery sticks diced
- 1/2 small butternut squash peeled and diced
- 400 g | 14oz cavolo nero diced (or kale, stalks removed)
- 100 g | 3.5oz cherry tomatoes quartered
- 1 large onion finely diced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1/2 red chilli deseeded & finely diced (or more, to taste)
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 2-3 tsp ras el hanout
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- large handful flat-leaf parsley roughly chopped
- large handful coriander including stalks, roughly chopped
- Juice of 1 lemon
- vegetable oil to fry
- sea salt and black pepper
- Put the lentils in a large bowl and cover with double the volume of cold water and 1 tbsp lemon juice. The next day rinse the lentils with plenty of water, drain and set aside.
- Heat a little vegetable oil in a large pot. Add the chopped onion and spices and fry, stirring, over medium-low heat for 5 minutes.
- Add the garlic, chilli, carrot and celery and fry for another 5 minutes.
- Add the minced lamb and brown, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. Stir in the tomato paste and brown sugar.
- Add the lentils and stock. Stir then bring to a simmer. Add the butternut squash and kale after 20 minutes then continue to cook for a further 25 minutes.
- Add the cherry tomatoes, lemon juice and stir in the herbs. Season to taste and serve.