Pumpkin-Dal-Puree with grilled Halloumi and Spinach Salad

Happy Halloween !! It’s been a while since my last post, my new job has been taking up a lot of my time over the past few months but I am finally getting there. So much to learn, so much to take in, but it’s fun and I am doing something I absolutely love: working in the world of food, putting menus together and coming up with recipe ideas, eating lots of delicious food and most importantly, working with a brilliant team of like-minded foodies. The best team I have worked with for a very long time. Having started off as a recipe developer, this week’s recipe is one of the ones I developed for Marleyspoon. I did it a while back, but since it takes time from the developing stage till actual publishing the recipe, I am only posting it now.

Dal is one of my favourite dishes, I almost always have some when eating out at an Indian restaurant. Sadly there are not many good Indian restaurants in Berlin if any. Please message me, in case you actually can recommend one in the German capital. Dal usually comes in form of a soup or curry type of side dish. The more I liked the idea of having it as a puree. This is a very flexible recipe, you can substitute the type of bean with any other white bean and use sweet potato or squash instead of pumpkin. So, possible no, or very little shopping to be done for making it :).

This version not only works on Halloween but rather throughout the winter months, it is warming and comforting. I love the rich and deep flavours of ginger and tandoori spices. A touch of heat from the chili and the freshness that is coming from the fresh and tender coriander leaves and the side of fresh spinach with a lemony dressing finish off this dish nicely. What is good to know for all my fellow foodie nerd, is that the beans are packed with plant-based proteins, minerals, and vitamins, the pumpkin is rich in betacarotene, which is great for our skin and the spinach is rich in magnesium, which may help to keep cool on a busy day at work. Finally, the ginger, garlic, and spices give an extra immune boost in preparation of the cold winter months. A dish to be had more than once in the coming weeks :).

And here is what you need for this delicious Pumpkin-Dal-Puree with grilled Halloumi and Spinach Salad

Ingredients: organic if possible /- Serve 3-4
400g Hokkaido pumpkin
10g Tandoori spice mix
30g fresh ginger
2 cloves of garlic
1 onion
1 red Thai chili
400g Butter beans (tin)
225g Halloumi (optional)
150g Cherry tomatoes
100g baby spinach
1 organic lemon (unwaxed)
50g natural yogurt, coconut oil


1. Pre-heat the oven at 180C. Melt 1-2 tbsp of coconut oil and mix with 1-2 tsp of the Tandoori spice mix. Cut the pumpkin in half, remove the seeds and cut into 2cm sized cubes. Place the pumpkin on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Pour the spiced oil over the pumpkin and mix until the pumpkin pieces are well covered with the spiced oil and bake in the oven for 15/20 minutes until tender.

2. Cut the halloumi into 0.5cm this slices, brush with vegetable oil and place onto the baking paper next to the pumpkin in the oven. Bake for 10-15 until golden brown. For an even bake turn after 7 Minutes. This dish works really well without the halloumi, so if you do not have any, not to worry.

3. Bring 150ml to the boil. Peel garlic, onion, and ginger and chop finely. In a medium-sized pot, heat 1 tbsp of coconut oil over medium heat and saute the onions, garlic, and ginger for 2-3 minutes. Take the pot off the heat, stir in 1 tsp of the Tandoori mix, and leave for 1 more minute.

4. De-seed the chili and cut in half. Drain the beans. Add the beans, the chili and 1-2 cups of boiling hot water to the pot and simmer for 5-7 Min. The beans should be just covered by water. Then drain the beans and keep 2 cups of cooking water. Remove the chili, cut into fine slices and set aside.

5. Once the pumpkin is baked and nice and soft, add to the bean mix and blend into a smooth puree. If needed add a little cooking water to the puree. Season to taste with salt and chili. Wash the spinach, cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Zest and juice half a lemon cut the other half into wedges. Roughy chop coriander including stems.

6. Mix the yogurt with 1-2EL lemon juice, zest and 1 tbsp of finely chopped coriander, season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix the Spinach and tomatoes with the some of the yogurt dressing and serve with the dal-puree and the baked halloumi. Garnish with the rest of the fresh coriander, lemon zest and chili to taste.

Enjoy x