I know, it's just so good. I will eat lentils all day, everyday, plan or with vinegar…Curried or with mustard.The same with squash, I am always going to the fridge to scoop a bit of acorn or pumpkin into my mouth. Whoa now, Just last night I accidentally ate my lunch for today, an entire ball jar of lentils mixed with pumpkin puree… oops…..kinda.
What we have here are chopped up veggies mixed with lentils, a splash of vinegar, and stuffed into the holes of delicate squash. What, that's not right… What we have here is AMAZING!!! We are talking the absolute perfect dish. These tight little packages are everything that I want in a food and can be eaten hot or cold, with a fork or with your fingers, on a plate with some rice or quinoa, or in my case, standing in front of the refrigerator.(At least I had the decency to close the door while I was standing there!)
These rounds are a quick and easy and just happen to be a perfect Thanksgiving dish. Not to big, unlike the over used stuffed acorn squash where you have to really commit and eat the entire thing. No, people can take one nice little rounds and it doesn't cover their entire plate Or take three cause they are that good. The colors are bright, the presentation is simple and flavor really bring out the happy in my Thanksgiving. You bring these to the table and people with think you are awesome. They will think you are beautiful. So smart and intelligent.. You really can't go wrong here with this one. No..You really can't.
To start, grab the dried lentils. If you have never cooked lentils, you are stupid. No, wait, you are not stupid, but if you don't start cooking them after this, then you are stupid. Lentils are the most delicious, nutritious , not to mention cheap food. They are fuss free and fast…You now have no excuse. Now, rinse and check for the stray stone, In a heavier bottom pot, mix one part lentils to about 2 parts water. Exact measuring is not needed, just don't let you lentils dry out and burn. If you think you need more water, them add a bi more. Add a sprinkle of salt and bring to a boil for a minute. Turn heat to low and let simmer unit done to you preference, about 15 minute. I suggest a little on the al-dente side.
You have your lentils on the stove, now is the time to get those squash rounds in the oven.. All you need to do is cut the delicata into 1 inch rounds, scoop the seeds and roast in oven for 10 on each side..This is a really easy squash, easy to cut, minimal seeds and oh so pretty.
While the lentils are cooking and the squash is a-roastin finely chop a small red onion, a small red bell pepper, and 2 medium sized mushrooms. Throw them in a pan on medium heat with a tiny splash of oil just so the veggies don't stick. Cook until fragrant and tender, but not mushy. Finely chop the kale and either finely chop or grate carrot. Put the carrot and kale into a big bowl. The addition of the hot lentils and veggies will wilt the kale down to just right and the carrots will be that nice little crunch crunch crunch in the mixture.
Add the cooked down veggies to the bowl of kale and carrots. Mix in about 2 cups of cooked lentils, a sprinkle of salt and pepper and a splash of red wine vinegar or balsamic. The squash should be done and ready to fill.
Now here is the tricky part.. Dont eat the entire bowl of the lentil mixture. I am not saying that I did, but I am not saying that I didn't. All I know is that I might have had to make another batch…
Anyways.. Let the squash cool a bit on the pan or sheet, just enough so you don't burn your hands when your handling it. You have squash with holes, you have lentil mixture…Stuff the lentils mixtures into the holes. Dont just scoop a little, really stuff and overflow those babies. Stick them back into the oven for another 6-8 minutes, just to let everything cook and marinate together.
Remove from oven and OOh and AAAH.. To finish, drizzle a tiny bit of vinegar on top of each round. Trust that you want it. Not a lot, just a drizzle
You have done it! Now serve and eat…Or, let cool completely on pan, cover with foil and stick in the fridge for the next day. All you need to do is pop them back in the oven for 15 minutes until hot all the way through. Fast, easy, and can be made ahead… Its ok, you can stop applauding me, I know I am Awesome!
This recipe makes 12-14 one inch rounds
- 2 Delicata Squash
- 2 cups prepared lentils
- 1 small red onion
- 1 small red pepper
- 2 mushrooms..(I used white button)
- 1 small carrot
- a few kale leaves
- salt and pepper
- Red wine Vinegar. (Balsamic Vinegar works too)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Wash squash and cut into 1- 1/2 inch rounds. Remove the seed and guts..(Set aside for roasting). Place rounds on a very lightly oiled or parchment lined baking sheet. Place in oven, letting round bake for about 20 minutes, flipping each round after about 10 minutes. Squash is done when just fork tender..
While squash is baking, finely dice the onion, pepper,and mushrooms. Place in a skillet with a splash of oil on medium low heat until veggies are soft and fragrant, Finely chop kale and carrots and place in a large bowl. Once veggie mixture is done, transfer to bowl with ale and carrots. Add 2 cups of lentils.. Mix with salt and pepper and a teaspoon of vinegar.
Once the delicata is cooked and cooled enough to handle, Scoop a generous amount of the lentil mixture into each round, slightly packing the mixture in. Place back in oven for another 6-8 minutes or, you can let them completely cool, wrap the baking sheet in foil and stick in fridge until you need them.When ready to serve, reheat for 10-15 minutes in oven at 400 degrees. Remove from oven and serve with a drizzle of vinegar on each round,