This is a variation on the red lentil curry I made before. But with added pumpkin. Obviously.

I grew pie pumpkins this year and still have some to use up, so with this recipe I roasted the pumpkin whole in the oven for an hour, then (once it had cooled down) cut it up and peeled the flesh away from the skin and seeds. You could also use canned pumpkin purée (as long as it’s unsweetened). The tomatoes were also home-grown: in the glut of summer I blend tomatoes and then boil them down into sauce and freeze them in (approximately) 400 gram batches in freezer bags for the winter. But canned tomatoes would be fine, too.

Recipe for Pumpkin and red lentil curry (serves 2)

1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 heaped tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp oil
100g onions, sliced
1 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp fresh ginger, finely grated
1 tsp chilli powder (or a chopped red chilli – I used a dried one)
375g tomatoes (canned or fresh), blended
90g red lentils
460g cooked pumpkin
salt and pepper
2 tbsp lime juice
½ cup brown rice

Total calories per serving: 500

Method: Dry roast the coriander and cumin seeds in a pan until fragrant, then grind them to a powder with a mortar and pestle. Warm the oil and fry the onion until soft. Stir in the spices and cook for a minute or two before adding the tomatoes and lentils. Cook for about half an hour, or until the lentils are soft. You may need to add some water if the curry gets too dry. Cook the rice for 20 minutes. Stir the pumpkin into the curry towards the end of the cooking time with the salt and pepper. When you are ready to serve the meal, stir the lime juice into the curry. If you have a spare lime, quarter it and serve it on the side.

Alongside this curry, I made a pizza for the kids. The eldest ate hers and then I had to go out and collect the youngest from a friend’s house. In the meantime, my husband came home and ate the youngest child’s pizza. Yes, HE ATE THE PIZZA. And not the healthy, filling, curry. I couldn’t believe it. In what universe is pizza going to be a dish suitable for a fasting day (I thought)?

Luckily, our son enjoys curry and was quite happy to eat his dad’s supper. When I’d got over my irritation, I put the ingredients for the pizza into the calorie counter and, actually, it wasn’t too bad, coming out at under 500 calories:

100g bread
100g tomato
25g chorizo
50g cheddar