This bowl of lentil curry which is bit of a twist on traditional dahl makes for such a cozy and filling weekday dinner that can be enjoyed both with rice or just as soup and is not only comforting but also nutritious and easy, not to mention completely plant based and unbelievably delicious.
This can be tailor made to suit your taste buds. It can be made spicier or more sombre and is a great way to clear the crisper drawer of any lingering forgotten vegetables.
All you need are some vegetables of choice and here I have beans, carrots, spinach and pepper along with the very essential flavour base that’s made of onions, ginger, garlic and tomatoes. Also soaked lentils, coconut milk and turmeric, coriander powder, garam masala, red chilli powder and cumin seeds.
chop the vegetables into bite sized pieces and boil with soaked lentils until the lentils and vegetables are soft. Do not boil spinach along with the veg and lentils.
Chop the tomatoes, onions, ginger and garlic and keep aside.
In a large pan heat some coconut oil
Add in the cumin seeds and let them splutter
add the onions
with some salt and cook until golden brown.
add the ginger and garlic
and cook until it no longer smells of raw garlic.
Now add the tomatoes followed by spices that are coriander powder, turmeric, garam masala and red chilli powder.
Stir well to combine and keep stirring until the tomatoes are cooked.
Now add the coconut milk and bring to a boil
and add in the spinach if using.
The curry at this stage will be quite thick and you might need to add water.
Let it simmer and come to a boil and this will really draw out the flavour from the coconut milk.
Add the cooked lentil and veg. I might have cooked mine too long but that’s fine.
Add some salt because the curry will need it.
I also ended up adding some more chilli powder because I like this curry a bit spicy.
Let it simmer for a few minutes before turning off the flame and putting a lid on to let it rest for a few minutes before serving.
Depending on how thick or thin you want this curry water can be added.
Serve hot with flatbreads or rice or just help yourself to a large bowl and let it nourish and heal you this winter.
Ingredients Red lentils : 60g Yellow lentils: 100g Coconut milk: 250g Tomatoes : 200g (2 medium) Onion: 150g (1 medium) garlic and ginger chopped: 1 tbsp each Chopped veg: 350-400g Coconut oil: 1 tbsp Water: 700mls Spinach: 100g (optional) Salt to taste Spices Cumin seeds, red chilli powder, turmeric : 1 tsp Coriander powder, garam masala: 2 tsp
Soak the lentils overnight or at least 3-4 hours before cooking. Add the chopped vegetables to the lentils and cook until softened. Leave out the spinach if using.
For the flavour base dice the tomatoes, onions, ginger and garlic and keep aside.
In a large pan heat some coconut oil and add the cumin seeds until they splutter. Add chopped onions and some salt and cook until the onions are golden brown in colour. Add ginger and garlic and cook until the garlic no longer smells raw. (roughly a minute). Add in the chopped tomatoes along with the spices and cook until the tomatoes have softened.
Pour in the coconut milk and let it simmer before finally adding in the spinach if using. Add some water to thin out the curry and some more salt.
Let it come to a bubble before finally adding in the cooked lentils and vegetables.
Put a lid on the pan and let it gently simmer for a few minutes.
Lastly check for seasonings and add more salt or other spices as needed.
If it’s too thick then you can add some water but let it come to a boil again after that.