Earthy, flavorful, healthy, seasonal. This dish has got it all.
It makes for the ultimate comfort food dinner and leftovers work beautifully for lunch the next day!
You could, in a pinch, substitute sweet potatoes or butternut squash for the pumpkin, but pumpkin is really special here.
Aren’t pumpkins just lovely? I love pumpkin pie as much as the next guy, but I don’t think pumpkins get enough attention in savory dishes, for sure.
- 4 cups chopped pumpkin (1 small pumpkin)
- 1 red onion, chopped coarsely or in thick rings
- 4 plump cloves garlic, chopped coarsely
- 1-2 tbs olive oil (+a little extra for drizzling)
- 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
- 1 1/2 cups green, brown, or French lentils, rinsed
- 3 cups water
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 medium head curly or dino kale, washed and chopped (or spinach, collards, or chard)
- lemon juice or more balsamic vinegar for drizzling
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
- optional add-ins: sun-dried tomatoes, fresh basil, roasted parsnips, etc
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
On a baking sheet, spread the chopped pumpkin, chopped onion (reserving a couple tablespoons), and garlic. Drizzle the olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the pumpkin mixture, tossing to coat. Sprinkle about 1/4 tsp salt over it. Bake until tender, about 25-30 min.
Meanwhile, prepare the lentils: combine the lentils, water, and bay leaf in a saucepan, bring to a boil, and then let simmer uncovered for 20 minutes.
Also, steam the kale or other greens until bright green and soft.
When everything is done, assemble using lentils as the base and adding the greens and pumpkin on top. Add the remaining red onion (finely chopped), drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice/balsamic vinegar, and add salt and pepper to taste.