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I invented this recipe on a very cold winter's day, when our garden squash (Red Kuri, to be precise) were in need of using up. The meal needed to be hearty and filling, and use up the freaking squash surplus, without being spicy, as the kids object to spicy at the moment. I pulled together four or five recipes from Pinterest, added a few things, subtracted a few others, and actually remembered, for once, to write the whole thing down. It has become a family favorite, and now we're eagerly awaiting our next squash harvest!
In a pinch: No fresh parsley? Use 2 Tablespoons dried parsley.
As a lifelong New Yorker, I’m never ready to move out of a Summer mindset, where bathing suits, straw hats, and sandals are outfits of the day, and shift into Fall and Winter’s chilly weather, with the requisite insulated pants, fleece lined beanies and snow boots. While I’d prefer cucumber salad and iced chai for at least a few more months, I inevitably remember the following lines in Pete Seeger’s Turn! Turn! Turn!
To everything (turn, turn, turn) There is a season (turn, turn, turn) And a time to every purpose, under Heaven.
The song and this recipe remind me that it’s OK to welcome the turning of seasons from Summer into Autumn, and then Autumn into Winter with a delicious bowl of lentil soup!
In Italy, when I was growing up, it was traditional to eat lentils at New Year's eve, because they would bring good luck for the year to come (or money, specifically, since they are round)- But they are certainly good any time of they year, and they are lucky because they are healthy!
Lentils are a popular dish in Ecuador, my country of origin. They are also cheap, easy to make and a super source of protein. This recipe with the sofrito is one of my favorites but is not the only one I make. I will be posting other ways to cook them later. As a vegetarian I like to eat lentils many times a week and I usually prep them in advance to have them ready to heat up - yum!
A simplified and vegnaized North Indian recipe adapted from vegrecipesofindia.com. Tadkas are an easy and fun way to add flavour to an otherwise bland dish. Keep in mind that this does take a long time - start soaking the dal at least 3 hours before you want to eat.