Lentil & Butternut Squash Soup
Warming, hearty & full of antioxidants, this recipe is perfect for cold winter evenings.
This is one of our nutritionist Áine's favourite winter recipes. Butternut squash contains lots of vital poly-phenolic anti-oxidants and vitamins. It’s an excellent source of vitamin A and a great source of B vitamins like folates, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine), thiamin, and pantothenic acid. It’s also relatively cheap which is an added bonus. The addition of lentils boost the protein content and turmeric which is a fantastic anti-inflammatory herb really give this recipe a lot of reasons to add to your cookery book.
1 medium butternut squash
2 red bell peppers (sliced)
1 leek (sliced)
1 white onion (diced)
3 cloves of garlic (finely diced)
1tsp of turmeric
1tsp of chilli flakes
2-3tbsp of olive oil
1 ½ cups of red lentils (rinsed)
1.5 litres of vegetable stock
Black pepper & sea salt
1 tsp of pumpkin seeds
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Top and tail the butternut squash and remove the seeds. Dice into cubes and add to a mixing bowl along with2 tbsp of olive oil, 1tsp of turmeric, a pinch of black pepper and sea salt. Mix well to coat the diced squash. Place on a baking tray and roast in the oven for 20 minutes. Toast the pumpkin seeds for a few minutes, be careful not to leave too long, they don’t take long in a hot oven.
Chop the onion and leek finely and sauté in the pan with a little olive oil. Slice the red pepper and add to the pan along with the vegetable stock and lentils. Simmer for 15 minutes. Once the squash is roasted add to the pot and continue to simmer for a further 10-15 until the lentils are cooked.
Once finished, allow to cool slightly, puree soup using your preferred method. Use a hand blender and puree soup right in the pot until desired consistency. Or you can puree in your blender or food processor, this method may take two or three batches to complete. Add extra water as needed for desired thickness.
Serve with a tsp of toasted pumpkin seeds and enjoy!