Vegetarian lentil and pumpkin stew

Main Courses


1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup peeled and chopped carrots
2 cups uncooked brown lentils
1 tablespoon chili flakes
4 cups vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups diced pumpkin
2-3 sprigs of basil
2-3 sprigs of cilantro, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Extra virgin olive oil 


Start by soaking dry lentils in water while prepping other ingredients. This helps them cook faster and saves time. In a large pot, heat olive oil and add the bay leaf. Stir for a few seconds, allowing the bay leaf to release flavor. Add minced garlic, onions, celery and carrots. Sauté for 7-8 minutes till the onions and celery become semi-translucent. Drain lentils and add to the pot. Add chili flakes, salt, pepper and two and a half cups of broth. Cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes until the lentils are almost cooked through. Add the pumpkin and remaining broth to the pot. Once again, cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Check mid-way and add more broth if necessary. Once the pumpkin is cooked, add basil and cilantro. Ladle into bowls, and serve topped with chopped cilantro.