Inspired by the South Indian sambar, or lentil-based vegetable stew, this colourful dish is lovely served warm with chops or fish, or on its own with bread. It can also be eaten cold as a salad.
Serves 6 as a main dish or 12 as a side dish
This can be made up to a day ahead, kept in a covered container in the fridge and reheated.
4 tbsp olive oil
2 large onions, chopped
1 leek, sliced
5 garlic cloves, crushed
1 red pepper, deseeded and diced
250g (9oz) dried Puy lentils, rinsed
100ml (3½fl oz) white wine
600ml (1 pint) chicken or vegetable stock
1 large butternut squash (about 800g/1¾lb), peeled, deseeded and cut into 2cm (¾in) chunks
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp chopped parsley
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/Gas 7.
2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a deep frying pan, add the onions, leek, garlic and red pepper and fry over a medium-high heat for 5 minutes until starting to soften. Stir in the lentils (see tip), pour in the white wine and stock and bring to the boil, stirring. Cover with a lid, lower the heat and simmer for 40–45 minutes or until the lentils are tender. Remove the lid for the last 5–10 minutes if there is still a lot of liquid.
3. Meanwhile, pour the remaining oil into a large roasting tin, add the squash, tossing to coat in the oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 25–30 minutes or until golden and tender.
4. Add the squash to the lentils, season with salt and pepper, stir in the mustard and parsley and serve hot.
Do not season the lentils before they are cooked as this will make the outer skins tough.
Mary Berry will be demonstrating her talents at the BBC Good Food Show Winter, which takes place in the Birmingham NEC from 26-29th November.