Lentil and Vegetable Stew

1 lg onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic cloves, minced
2 12oz  packages frozen vegetables (italian blend, carrots, zucchini, cauliflower, lima beans, red bell peppers, and Italian green beans, but any chunky vegetables will work)
1 15oz can diced tomatoes
1 15oz can cooked lentils
4 c vegetable broth
1 1/4 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cumin
1/3 c quinoa
2/3 c canned pumpkin
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the onion in a large pot until it is soft, when almost done add the garlic. Add frozen vegetables, diced tomatoes, lentils, and broth. Cook medium high until it comes to a boil. Add quinoa and simmer until it is tender, about 15 minutes. Add pumpkin and cook for 5 more minutes, adding a little water if it seems too thick.

Side Notes:
-I had a little trouble locating canned lentils but was able to find Goya brand in the international aisle at my local grocery store.

-Although it tastes better, peeling and mincing garlic is a total pain. Especially because EVERY recipe ever calls for it. I choose to go the lazy overpriced route and buy minced garlic in a jar. Generally the flavor is not as intense as regular garlic so depending on my mood I will add a few more spoonfuls than the recommended amount.

-See my previous post about quinoa if the inclusion of that ingredient is freaking you out.

While this recipe is good on a cold day my (less fancy than the original recipe) version tasted like a pretty traditional stew. The prep time was pretty easy, just dicing an onion and opening cans which is nice, but waiting around for things to boil so you can add more ingredients sometimes provides for some boring moments in the kitchen… I thought the addition of the lentils were a good idea but the quinoa didn’t really do much for me and added an extra 5 minutes to cook time. I wonder if this recipe would be good thrown into a crock pot and cooked overnight. 

Original recipe can be found here: Fat Free Vegan

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