Whitney’s Delicata squash, sweet potato & lentil stew

(Option to serve over grains; farro, quinoa or wild rice)

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cups onion, diced

4 large cloves of garlic, minced

3 - 4 cups delicata squash, diced (wash, do not peel! The skin adds nutrients, fiber and vitamins A&C) 

1 large sweet potato, diced (wash, do not peel! The skin adds more nutrients, fiber and potassium) 

1 bunch of spinach, chopped 

3 1/2 cups vegetable stock

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 14oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes, with the juice! (fire roasted adds a great smoky quality)

1 14oz can coconut milk

1/2 cup lentils (red preferably, they have an earthier flavor) rinse and drain them

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons cinnamon

2 teaspoons curry powder

1/4 teaspoon cardamom

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

Red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper for some pep in your step (to taste) 

Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

 

Directions

- In large pot, add the oil, onion and garlic, stir together. Bring the heat to medium and sauté for five minutes

- Add the squash, and sweet potato, stirring all together, add a dash of salt, and continue to sauté for another five minutes

- Add the vegetable broth, canned tomatoes (with juice!) the coconut milk, lentils, tomato paste and all of your spices. Stir well!

- Bring everything to a boil. Reduce to medium, stir occasionally, simmer for 15- 20 minutes uncovered

- With a slotted spoon take out the squash and sweet potato pieces, and set aside. They should be almost fork tender, but still have a bit of crunch! 

- Add any other seasoning that you’d like at this time; garlic powder, turmeric, red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper

- Using an immersion blender (or popping it in your regular blender in 2-3 batches) blend, blend, blend!

- Combine the blended stew, sweet potatoes, squash and chopped spinach in the pot for a few more minutes. The spinach will wilt, and bringing everything together to a cohesive temperature

- Serve in a bowl as a stew or over a hearty grain of your choice. Farro is my personal favorite, and nutritionally dense

* Farro is an ancient whole grain, with ten percent of your daily iron needs, and seven grams of both protein and fiber! 

* Option to garnish with cilantro parsley, or thinly sliced green onion!

This stew will stay well in the fridge for up to 6 days, and freezes well

ENJOY!