from Bethany

Another delicious and hearty cold weather stew. It took 10 minutes to prepare and then cooked happily in the slow cooker while I went and did something else! My husband loved this dish served over brown rice. If desired, you can add other root vegetables such as carrots or celeriac to this stew. You can also replace the squash with sweet potatoes if you prefer.

1 pound French lentils or regular brown lentils
2 yellow onions, chopped
4 yellow potatoes, chopped
1/2 of a winter squash, seeded and chopped (I used buttercup – no peeling necessary!)
Vegetable broth or water (enough to cover other ingredients)
1 tablespoon dried basil
2 bay leaves
1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup of mirin, white wine or cooking sherry
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients except for the tomatoes, mirin and salt and pepper in a slow cooker, using enough vegetable broth to cover the other ingredients. Cook on high for 3 hours. After 2.5 hours, add the tomatoes (including the juices), mirin and salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine. Cook for the remaining half hour. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Remove the bay leaf and serve.

Serves 4-8 (depending on appetites!). Will freeze well.