When I made this, I served it alongside the chard from my previous post, because it is another Ottolenghi recipe, this one from Plenty. Equally delicious, and even easier to adapt for a quick dinner of spice lentils and rice - you don’t have to be too precious with all the ingredients for this one, and I didn’t have all of them on hand - but following the recipe does pay off in flavor.
Spiced Red Lentils with cucumber yogurt
adapted from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi
1 cup red lentils, rinsed
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
1 small onion, peeled and chopped
2 1/2 inches peeled fresh ginger, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno or other green chile, chopped
1 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
4 tbsp coconut or vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground tumeric
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
(10 curry leaves) (1/4 tsp fenugreek) (pinch asafetida) (I didn’t used these, so don’t take my word for it)
1 16oz can diced tomatoes
3/4 cup plain greek yogurt
3/4 cup fine diced cucumber
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1. Soak the lentils in the 1 1/2 cups water for 15-30 minutes. Use the time to do your chopping.
2. In a dutch oven or other large pot, put the mustard seeds over medium heat. When they start popping all over the place, add oil, onion, pepper, ginger, cilantro and garlic and give it a stir. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Add the spices and curry leaves and cook for another 5 minutes.
3. Add lentils, water, tomatoes and some salt. Cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes, until lentils are cooked.
4. In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, lime, cucumber and oil with a fork. Serve lentils topped with yogurt sauce and more cilantro leaves.