Creamy Vegetarian Red Lentil Dahl

Dahl is a warming 1-pot vegetarian curry that uses almost only your pantry staples, making this dish easy and affordable. Red lentils are cooked in fragrant spices and coconut milk until thick and creamy, served with rice or homemade flatbread.

Meal Prep

Breakdown

  • Start by cooking the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli.
  • Add the spices.
  • Add the lentils, water and coconut cream and bring to a boil.
  • Allow to simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Cook rice as per packet instructions.
  • Once cooked, serve the dahl over cooked rice, then top with fresh coriander, roasted cashews and optional pickled onion.

Tips

  • There are different varieties of lentils, brown, black and green all retain their shape well when cooked. Whereas red lentils, which are used in this dahl recipe tend to lose their shape when cooked, which gives the dahl a nice thick and slightly mushy texture.
  • Before adding the lentils, rinse them to remove any rocks or off-colour lentils.

‍This recipe serves four, if you’re cooking for two simply halve the recipe. (Use 1 small onion or shallot to avoid food waste. Either freeze ½ the coconut cream or use a full tin of coconut milk and adjust water accordingly)

INGREDIENTSIngredients
  • Coconut oil
  • 1 brown onion (diced)
  • 2 garlic cloves (crushed)
  • 1 Tbsp ginger (grated)
  • 1 red chilli (finely sliced)
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • ¼ tsp cardamon seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 Tbsp curry powder
  • 1 ½ cups of dried red lentils (rinsed and drained)
  • 3 ½ cups of water, vegetable stock or bone broth
  • 400ml coconut cream
  • 1 ½ cups basmati rice
  • 1 portion of homemade flatbreads (optional)
  • 1 head broccoli (cut into florets)

  • ½ cup coriander
  • ¼ cup cashews (cashews)
  • 1 red chilli (finely chopped)
  • Pickled onions (optional)
METHODMethod
  1. If you are cooking the flat breads, start by preparing the dough.
  2. Add 1-2 Tbsp of coconut oil to a large pot or pan over medium heat, add the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli and cook for 5 minutes or until the onions are nice and soft.

  3. Add 1 Tbsp of coconut oil to the onion mix, along with mustard seeds, cardamon seeds, cumin seeds, curry powder and garam masala; cook for 1-2 minuter or until fragrant.

  4. Add the lentils, water and coconut cream and bring to the boil.

  5. Once boiling turn down to a low heat, pop the lid on and let simmer for 20 minutes or until the lentils are tender. Be careful as it’s easy for the lentils to overcook and become chalky.

  6. While the dahl is simmering, cook the rice as per the packet instructions or shape, roll and pan fry the flatbreads.

  7. Remove the lid and turn up the heat to let the Dhal reduce slightly.

  8. Steam the broccoli for 3-5 minutes or until cooked through but it still has a nice crunch.

  9. Once cooked serve the dahl over cooked rice, then top with fresh coriander, roasted cashews, fresh chilli and some pickled onions.
VARIATIONS

Vegetables

  • Add vegetables to your curry. Like potato, tomatoes and cauliflower (cut into small pieces) - add at the same time as the lentils.

  • Add spinach during the last 5 minutes of cooking.

Other

  • Swap rice for cauliflower rice. Simply blitz or roughly chop 1 head of cauliflower. Add to a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt. Cook at the same time as the chicken for 20-30 minutes until golden brown and crispy in places.