North African Squash and chickpea stew

This is a delicious recipe, warming and filling.  Although it seems to have quite a few ingredients, it is actually quite simple to make.  It also reheats very well if frozen in portions.

Also from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Veg book.


  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed or finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon of cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon of ginger
  • 100g of red lentils
  • 400g tin of chickpeas – drained
  • 8 saffron strands – toasted and crushed
  • 500ml passata
  • A handful of parsley
  • A large bunch of coriander
  • 500g squash
  • 1.2l of vegetable stock

Preparation method

  1. Heat the oil in a large pan on a medium heat.
  2. Add the onions and sauté until just turning golden, then turn the heat down slightly.
  3. Add the chopped garlic, celery, pepper, turmeric, cinnamon and ginger, and continue to sauté for a few minutes.
  4. Add the lentils, chickpeas, saffron, tomato sauce, parsley and half the coriander, then cook on a low heat for 15 minutes.
  5. Peel the squash, get rid of any seeds and cut into chunky cubes. Add it to the pan with the vegetable stock and cover with a lid. Leave to simmer for around 20- 30 minutes until the squash is tender.
  6. Season to taste and serve, adding the rest of the coriander leaves as a garnish.
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