• Ingredients:
  • 2 tbsp vegetable (rapeseed) oil
  • 2 large onions, peeled and chopped
  • 4 - 6 fat cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped or crushed
  • 4 small red chillis, thinly sliced (deseeded or not, depending on your taste)
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground corander
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • OR replace the above ground spices and 2 of the chillis with 1 tbsp chilli powder
  • 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
  • 1 green pepper, sliced
  • 1 yellow pepper, sliced
  • Approx 300g (prepared weight) squash (butternut, acorn, crown prince), peeled, deseeded and cubed
  • 400g can butter beans in water, drained & rinsed
  • 400g can kidney beans in water, drained & rinsed
  • 100g red lentils
  • 750ml red wine (yes, 1 bottle!)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • To serve:
  • Baked potatoes (sweet or white) or brown basmati rice or crusty wholemeal bread or pearl barley
  • Fat free Greek yogurt
  • Reduced fat extra mature cheddar cheese
  • Chopped parsley or coriander (fresh or frozen)

Why ‘Racing Pulses’? Well, it’s spicy, it’s heart-warming, it contains loads of beans and lentils (pulses) and other vegetables but best of all it’s very economical to make.  The list of ingredients may look long, but most are store cupboard items.


In a large flameproof casserole dish, heat the oil over a medium heat. Add the onions and fry until softened and golden, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, peppers & chilli and fry for a further minute. Then add the spices or curry powder and cook the spices for 2 minutes or so until fragrant.

Add the remaining ingredients, bring to the boil. Then turn down the heat and simmer for 50 minutes or so until reduced and the lentils are cooked through.

Add some chopped coriander or parsley before serving.


Try serving with baked sweet potatoes or cooked pearl barley as change from rice. Top with reduced fat extra mature cheddar cheese or for a creamy cheesy combo, try a spoonful of extra light cream cheese.

This freezes very well so it’s worth making the full batch and freezing the remainder in portions. Defrost thoroughly before reheating.