roasted acorn squash and orange corriander lentils

October 19, 2017

lately I have been feeling a persistent restlessness

when I’m in the city, I long for the country but when I find myself among the fields and gardens of the farm, I yearn for that urban hum and bustle

In the company of others I imagine a sublime solitude and in those moments of separateness, I find myself seeking the company of others – jovial conversations and long drawn out dinners with friends.

Writing has been all but impossible. Walking through the waning fields, with their flocks of black headed geese picking away at the few remaining corn kernals,  my head is a swirl of words. But then, I sit down to write and the storm of words I could barley keep from blurting out to the geese has all but vanished
There is some normalcy to the feelings of restlessness this time of year – when the whole world seems to be in transition – how could I not get caught up in its rythams too? I’m wishing things would slow down and hurry up all at the same time 
And so I have been doing what I always do in times in moments of transition – sitting with the discomfort and going dutifully and with renewed dedication to the fundamental roots of my practice. Finding the delight in the act of doing -of picking up my camera to capture the gentle light and shadows on the side of our old barn, or cooking in the city cottage kitchen with the still beautiful produce coming from the farm garden. Of elevating these everyday acts.
There is sometimes magic in revisiting the places you have been before – it getting to explore them with a sense of familiarity which wasn’t there before and realizing there are opportunites for growth in this familiar territory.

This recipe has been sustaining us in these between days – where it feels like summer still has not released is grasp completly but the richness and gentleness of autumn is lapping at the corners of the days slowly pushing to take over.
its deceivingly simple but incredibly bright and satisfying – equally good as a cold salad as it it warm and a little extra brothy on those chillier nights.
The key is the long pepper is – complex and aromatic. its  elevate the simple lentils and lend an indescribable almost floral notes have me using them in just about everything in my autumn kitchen.  Nuanced and elegant it holds something of the exotic that seems to quell my restless soul. And the coriander dressing still sings of summer, bright sharp against the earthy lentils. They are a lovely balance in this season of transition.

Curio Spice carries and excellent long pepper variety and a beautifully bright coriander seed

Roasted Acorn Squash with Long Pepper Lentils & an Orange Coriander Dressing

 

  • 1.5 cups small green french lentils
  • 2-3  long black peppers
  • 3 shallots minced finely
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 4 Cups water
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 acorn squash of any variety
  • 2 whole green onions
  • handful of fresh cilantro leaves
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees farenheight
  2. Sautee the shallot and a pinch of salt in the olive oil over medium high heat until translucent
  3. reduce heat and add the garlic and long pepper to the pan, stir and cover aprox 3 minutes. do not let the garlic brown but everything should be very soft
  4. add the rinsed and drained lentils to the pan and suttee about 2 minutes before adding the water 
  5. bring to a boil then reduce heat. Cover & cook on a low simmer 30-40 minutes or until the lentils are tender but still hold their shape
  6. While the lentils cook, wash the acorn squash and cut them in half. Then cut in crescent shaped slices, about 2 inches thick and place on baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper toss to combine.
  7. Bake for 15-20 minutes, turning once until the squash is tender.
  8. When the lentils are done, let them stand uncovered 3 minutes. remove long peppers – then scoop them into a bowl and toss with half the dressing.
  9. place lentils on a plate and top with slices of the roasted squash. Divide the remaining dressing between each dish and top with chopped green onion and cilantro leaves

For the dressing 

  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds 
  • Zest 1 orange  and the juice of half
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp habeniaro (optional)
  1. toast coriander seeds in a dry skillet over medium high heat until aeromatic. about 2-3 minutes
  2. crush or blend toasted seeds and add to the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl. whisk well to combine

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