First, I sauté onions with some spices (e.g. a dash each of coriander, cumin, and turmeric) with an extra tbsp of oil. After the onions are golden, I toss in dry lentils and stir frequently. Once they begin to toast (they begin turning a deeper shade of whatever color lentil you are using), I toss in a selection of sliced ginger and diced vegetables (e.g., butternut squash, carrots, zucchini) and several cups of water.
Then, I simmer in a heavy covered pot (pressure cookers or creuset/staub pots are a great option) for around an hour, checking in on the dish for salt/water/stirring needs every 10-15 minutes.
On colder days, to make the dish more hearty, add pureed potatoes or carrots, tempering to reduce lumps. To add a bit of aesthetic appeal, I like to stir in a spoonful of yogurt (photo) and top with a sprig of parsley.