This Indian stew was fast to prepare, loaded with spices and flavor, and was absolutely fabulous. What a combination! If that wasn’t enough, it was also a hearty vegetarian dish with a little bit of heat. All my favorites.
This recipe is from Milk Street: The New Home Cooking by Christopher Kimball. It is a simplified version of a classic Goan dish. I increased the amount of onion and served the stew with warm naan and chopped grape tomatoes on the side as an optional garnish.
Yield: Serves 4 to 6
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 2 T coconut or peanut oil
- 4 garlic cloves, smashed
- kosher salt
- 3 tsp finely grated fresh ginger, divided
- 2 tsp yellow or brown mustard seeds
- 2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp freshly ground fennel seeds
- 3/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 3 1/2 cups water
- 13.5 to 14 oz can coconut milk
- 1 cup split red lentils, rinsed
- 6 oz (about 6 cups) baby spinach, roughly chopped
- juice of 1/2 to 1 lime
- unsweetened coconut flakes, for garnish, optional
- chopped tomatoes, for garnish, optional
- In a large saucepan over medium to medium-high, combine the onion, oil, garlic, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt.
- Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions have softened and are just beginning to color, 7 to 9 minutes.
- Stir in 2 teaspoons of the grated ginger, the mustard seed, turmeric, coriander, fennel, and red pepper flakes.
- Cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add the water, coconut milk, and lentils, then bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until the lentils have broken down, about 30 to 40 minutes.
- Uncover and stir in the spinach; return to a simmer.
- Off the heat, add the remaining 1 teaspoon of grated ginger and the lime juice.
- Season with salt to taste.
- Serve, garnished with coconut flakes and chopped tomatoes, as desired.