For a tasty and easy to make meat-free meal Merrilees Parker bubbles up a wonderful version of the classic lentil dahl
By Merrilees Parker
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • small bunch coriander
  • 300 g Puy lentils
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated
  • 1/2 tsp asafoetida
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1.2 litres water
  • 3 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 2 green chillies, chopped
  • 8 curry leaves
  • 2 tomatoes, seeds removed and finely chopped
  • 1 lemon, juice only
  • 2 spring onions, very finely sliced


1. Roughly chop the stalks of the coriander and finely chop the leaves; leave on one side.

2. Put the lentils into a heavy-based saucepan with the ginger, half the asafoetida, the coriander stalks and a teaspoon of salt; pour over the water. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 30 minutes.

3. Beat thoroughly until smooth, adding a little more water if the mixture appears too thick.

4. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small heavy-based frying pan. Add the remaining asafoetida, turmeric, cumin, mustard seeds, chillies and curry leaves. Cook for 30 seconds or so, until the oil is bubbling and the seeds begin to pop, then stir immediately into the lentils. The mixture may spit a little, but this is fine.

5. Stir in the tomatoes, lemon juice and spring onions and check the seasoning.

6. Garnish with the finely chopped coriander leaves and serve straight away with steamed rice.

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