As the seasons change, our moods change – so we tend to seek out comfort food and colourful finds to brighten the days. Creamy curries and spicy foods add that element of warmth that help lift our spirits. This lentil dahl recipe is a fantastic mood food – packed with seasonal ingredients that are nourishing, flavourful and super economical.
- 1 tablespoon of rapeseed oil
- 1 inch of ginger
- ½ an onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 2 tablespoons of hot/medium curry powder
- 1 teaspoon of turmeric
- 1 teaspoon of ground mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon of cumin
- A bunch of fresh coriander
- Sea salt and ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon of tomato purée
- 220 g (2 cups) of rinsed red lentils
- 400 g of butternut squash – peeled and cubed
- A few handfuls of spinach
- 1 tin (400 g) of chopped tomatoes
- 1 tin (400 g) of coconut milk
- 150 (200 ml) of water
- Peel and finely chop the garlic cloves, ginger and onion. Prepare the lentils by rinsing them in cold water. Then, peel and chop the butternut squash into bite size cubes. Use a potato peeler to peel the squash.
- In a large saucepan – begin by heating the oil over a medium heat.
- Add the ginger, garlic, onion and all the dry spices. Fry these off for about 2 minutes.
- Next, add all the butternut squash and fry for a further 3 minutes – stirring constantly.
- Add the full tin of tomatoes, tomato purée, 150ml of the water and the full can of coconut milk to the pot. Stir everything together and then add the lentils and spinach.
- Bring to the boil and then simmer for about 30-35 minutes on a low heat. Add a generous pinch of sea salt and pepper to the dahl mixture and taste. Taste is key when using lentils as they are a bland ingredient that require plenty of flavour.
- If you find that the mixture is to dry, then add a little extra water and simmer further. You want the dahl to be nice and creamy.
- Serve in a large bowl on its own or on a bed of rice. Then, top with some freshly chopped coriander