Warm Roasted Pumpkin and Puy Lentil Salad

A Quick and Easy Supper Recipe for All the Family

It’s that time of year when we all need big flavours and lots of vitamins to ward off those nasty bugs that are just waiting for a moment of immune system weakness.  Whether it is in the nursery school playground or on the tube on the way back from work, I can feel them waiting to attack, and to be frank, I just don’t have the time to get sick right now!

So, with that in mind, I feel myself being drawn towards highly nutritious supper suggestions that, with a little bit of prep, you can just chuck in the oven and allow it to its thing, whilst you get on with the rest of the ‘to-do’ list.  Also, those that involve minimal washing up are a winner in my book.

Here is my one-pot-wonder.  A combination of lots of flavours to give you and your fam an immune system boost.

Warm Roasted Pumpkin and Puy Lentil Salad
Serves 4
Prep in 15 minutes, cooks in 60 minutes

Ingredients and suggested quantities:
½ small pumpkin or ½ butternut squash if out of season, peeled and cut into chunks
½ red onion, cut into chunks
1 red pepper, cut into chunks
1 leek, sliced
3 large garlic cloves, squashed with the back of a knife
Handful of cherry tomatoes
3 sprigs of fresh thyme, de-stemmed
Olive oil
1 tin of Merchant Gourmet puy lentils, drained and rinsed in cold water

1 bag of rocket leaves
2 avocados, cut into chunks
4 spring onions, cut diagonally into thin slices
1 packet of feta, cut into cubes

For the Dressing
½ lemon, juiced and zested
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 handful fresh mint, washed and chopped
1 handful fresh basil, washed and chopped
Freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp olive oil

  1. Pre-heat oven to 220c
  2. Chuck the pumpkin, onion, red pepper, leeks, garlic, cherry tomatoes, thyme into an oven proof dish, drizzle with olive oil and put in the oven for 30 minutes, then reduce temp to 180c for a final 15 minutes
  3. Whilst the vegetables are in the oven, mix all the dressing ingredients together in a bowl
  4. At the end of cooking time, turn off the oven and tip the lentils into the vegetables and combine. Leave in the cooling oven for 5 minutes
  5. Remove dish from oven, add the rocket, avocados, spring onions and the dressing, and then toss
  6. Top with the cubes of feta and serve

This is delicious literally served as is, or you could serve with some protein of some sort – a shredded chicken or duck breast, some crispy parma ham or a poached salmon fillet.  Either way, it is a good flavoursome winter warmer that everyone can enjoy.  It’s also pretty good cold the next day.

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