Spicy lentil dahl

Spicy lentil dahl

Served with buckwheat, avocado and watercress

My first dahl, which is basically spicy red lentil soup. Adapted from a recipe on About.com.  Serves 3-4 people.


  • 1 tablespoon sunflower oil (sesame oil would be better)
  • large white onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, freshly chopped
  • 700-900 ml vegetable stock (water and bouillon powder)
  • “1 cup” red lentils – a cup is about 240 ml
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp ground corriander
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • little ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato purée
  • a large tomato, chopped
  • 2 tsp soya cream


  1. In a wok or other pan, dry roast the seeds until they pop, then crush in a mortar and pestle.  Add the other spices to it. (Skip this step if you’re using already-ground spices.)
  2. In a large pan, heat the oil over a medium heat, then add the onion, garlic and ginger.  Cook, stirring often, until the onions are translucent, about 6 minutes.
  3. Stirring constantly, add the stock, washed lentils and spices.  Bring to a low boil then cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the lentils are very tender.
  4. Stir in the tomatoes and soya cream until well combined.  Cook several minutes more, or until the soup is desired temperature and consistency, adding more water if desired.  Serve with cooked buckwheat or nice bread, and perhaps a dollop of soy yoghurt.

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