Mirpoix Lentil Kabocha Stew

Mirpoix (pronounced “meer-pwah”) is a combination of diced carrots, celery and onions that is used to add depth to soups, stocks and stews. Here it is used as the base from which additional ingredients are woven to create layers of subtle flavors. This tri-doshic vegetarian dish is suitable for chilly winter, spring or fall afternoons or evenings.
Makes 4 servings

4 ounces onion, diced
2 ounces celery, diced
2 ounces carrot, diced

2 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, pressed
¼ cup red wine
7½ cups vegetable broth
2 cups French lentils
2 dried shiitake mushrooms, rehydrated in ½ cup water (strained and water reserved)
2 bay leaves
1 star anise
½ tsp paprika
5” sprig fresh tarragon
3” sprig fresh rosemary
½ tsp Himalayan salt
2 cups roasted kabocha squash, peeled, chopped
4 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped

Mirpoix: In a small bowl, combine the onion, celery and carrots.

In a medium pan, warm the oil over medium-low heat. Add the mirpoix, cover and sweat for 5 minutes. Do not brown. Add the garlic and red wine. Simmer, uncovered until the red wine evaporates.

Add the broth, lentils, mushrooms, mushroom water, bay leaves, anise, paprika, tarragon and rosemary. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 25-30 minutes until the lentils are done. The lentils are done when they are soft and can be squished by gentle pressure between your fingers.

Remove the bay leaves, star anise, tarragon and rosemary sprigs.

Stir in the salt and squash; garnish with parsley.


The mirpoix can be prepped the night before and stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.  For optimal taste, use fresh tarragon and fresh rosemary.

Adapted from “Eat Well, Be Well: Ayurveda Cooking for Healthy Living” by Lois Leonhardi.

Lois Leonhardi is a Certified Ayurveda Practitioner, educator and author of “The Essential Ayurvedic Cookbook”. She trained under Dr. Lad at the Ayurvedic Institute in New Mexico and in Pune, India. She has over 20 years of experience in holistic studies including ayurveda, yoga and Buddhism. By following the ancient practice of integrating yoga with ayurveda, she will help you transform your life so you look and feel amazing. More information at: www.yogawithlois.com.

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