Winter Squash and Peanut Stew
The stew is delicious with butternut, red kuri, hubbard or buttercup squash. I wouldn’t use delicata as it’s not meaty enough. This stew is rich, nutrient dense, sweet, savory, just a little spicy and vegan. Garnish with green onions and crushed roasted and salted peanuts for an extra kick.
You can also add carrots or substitute carrots for some of the squash.
Serves 6 +/-
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 tablespoon ginger, minced
2 pounds winter squash cut into chunks, about a rounded 4 cups of chunks (you can always roast a whole or half squash, seeds strings and all, for 20 minutes or so in a 400-425 oven and then remove it and peel and dice which is easier than doing it raw and then proceed with the recipe)
A couple of carrots, scrubbed and cut into rounds (optional, see headnote)
1/2 cup red lentils, rinsed and drained
2 cups canned tomatoes, juice and all
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon,
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
Dash of cayenne pepper (to taste)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (or to taste)
4-5 cups Vegetable stock + extra as needed
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup green onion, thinly sliced
1/3 cup roasted and salted peanuts, chopped
Fresh lime juice, for serving (optional but very good)
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium- high heat. Add the onion and saute about 5 minutes until translucent. Add the garlic and ginger, and continue to cook for another 3 minutes, until garlic is fragrant, turning down the heat if garlic begins to brown. Add the squash, the red lentils, the tomatoes, the cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, and cayenne and give it all a good stir to combine.
Add 4 cups vegetable stock and bring mixture to a boil. If there isn’t enough broth to cover everything by at least 1 inch, add another cup of stock. When soup boils, reduce to a simmer and cook for 30-45 minutes, or until squash and lentils are very tender. If things look too dry add more broth as needed.
Add peanut butter and stir well. Using an immersion blender, blend soup until partially pureed, for a varied texture.
Season to taste, adding more salt and pepper as needed. Serve, topped with a tablespoon each of green onion and crushed peanuts and squeeze of lime juice.