Spicy Lentil and Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

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Prep Time: 10 mins
Cooking Time: 30 mins (Including Roasting time)
Serves: 3-4

1 cup Masoor Dal/Red Lentils
1 small Onion, finely chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
½ inch Ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
½ tsp Turmeric Powder
½ tsp Garam Masala or Any Curry Powder
1-2 tbsp Lemon/Lime Juice (Adjust acc to taste)
½ tbsp Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste

For Roasted Butternut Squash and Seeds:
½ medium Butternut Squash, peeled and diced into ½ inch cubes
1 tbsp Oil
Little Salt and Pepper Powder
Pre heat the oven at 200C/400F/Gas 6. Take cubed butternut squash, oil and salt and pepper in a large bowl and mix well. Spread them in a baking tray lined with an aluminium foil and place it on a middle rack of oven and let it roast for 10 minutes. Take it out from the oven and gently mix again and place it on the top rack and let it roast for another 5-10 minutes till it is cooked through.
To roast the butternut squash seeds, simply spread them in a baking tray and place them on a top rack of your oven and let them roast for 3-5 minutes till they turn golden.
While the butternut squash is roasting, wash and cook the masoor dal with turmeric, few drops of oil and 1½ cups of water. Add little water in between if needed and cook till the lentils starts to fall apart, about 10-15 mins.
Take half the amount of roasted butternut squash and add it to the cooked lentils. With a help of stick blender, grind this mixture to smooth. If using food processor or mixer make sure that the dal and squash have cooled little bit. You can also use potato masher to mash lentil and squash mixture. Keep it aside till needed.
Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds to it. When it starts to sizzle and turn golden red, add finely chopped onion, garlic and ginger. Sauté till onion turns translucent, about 1-2 mins.
Now add mashed lentil and butternut squash mixture, 2-3 cups of water or vegetable stock and garam masala. Let it cook uncovered for 5-7 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste and add more water if needed.
Switch off the gas and mix in other half of roasted butternut squash and lemon juice. Serve them hot garnished with roasted butternut squash seeds and spring of coriander leaves and enjoy with freshly baked bread or even Tandoori Roties.