Roasted squash, beetroot and carrot lentil salad

On a freezing cold November’s day the last thing on your mind for lunch is probably salad. The temperature drops and the mind naturally turns to foods laden with cream and cheese but this salad brings all the soothing flavours of autumn but without all the calories. This salad makes the most of seasonal vegetables and give an extra savoury whack with a tahini dressing. You can serve your the salad warm or at room temperature depending on your preference. The addition of some salty feta is also a welcome addition if you fancy. The added bonus is that the salad will keep covered in the fridge for a couple of days so it’s a perfect make ahead lunch for work too.

Ingredients- serves 4
1 pack of microwave puy lentils
1 butternut squash-peeled and diced
4 small beetroots- peeled and diced
2 large carrots- grated
2 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp tahini
8 tbsp warm water
Squeeze of lemon juice to taste
1 tsp garlic powder
Salt and pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 200c/ 180 fan whilst you place the diced squash on one baking tray and the diced beetroot on another. I tend to find that vegetables roast better on a shallower tray. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil to each tray long with some salt and pepper; move the diced vegetables so they get a coating of the oil. Roast for around 20- 30 minutes or until tender.

2. Remove the vegetables from the oven and transfer thr squash and beetroot to separate bowls. This allows them to cool and stops the beetroot running into the squash.

3. Meanwhile microwave the lentils and also allow to cool. While that’s happening you can arm assemble the tahini dressing which is quite literally a case of combining all the ingredients and whisking well together.  Remember to taste as you go!

4. Finally toss the cooled vegetables, squash and lentils together and grate in the carrot for an added crunch. Finish with the dressing and serve.

Roasted squash, beetroot, carrot and lentil salad- a surefire way to brighten up the kitchen on a chilly day!