I love the flavours of Indian cuisine. They inspire in me a craving that cannot be denied. Pakoras, Chana Masala, curried eggplant… if we’re going out to eat and I have a say, it’s Indian food. Try as I might, I haven’t been able to match the flavours from the restaurants but with Vegan Richa’s recipes, I’ve come pretty close. Last night, we settled into the beginning of what is turning out to be a long snowstorm with the warming flavours of Masala Lentils.
I reach for this recipe often because it includes all the flavours I crave, it’s super easy and I generally have all the ingredients required. And, as a mom who has to think about giving the kids food they’ll eat, I have a system with this meal that gives everyone what they want on their plates and nothing more. So it’s a win-win-win-win!
This recipe is from Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen: Traditional and Creative Recipes for the Home Cook. My method follows her recipe so I won’t write it out in full here. But there’s one thing I do to make this meal kid-friendly.
The first step in the recipe is to cook the lentils (3/4 cup). I cook a full cup, add a bit of extra water and that’s it. I make plain rice on the side and that’s what the kids get with a few crunchy veggies on the side. Plain lentils, plain rice and veggies on the side. Nothing could be easier.
As you can see, I had heirloom cherry tomatoes (my son only eats cherry tomatoes) and yellow bell pepper cut in strips. We have a salt grinder at the table with nice sea salt that the kids love to use so I didn’t even add salt.
I followed the rest of the recipe to fill my lentils with flavour.
Here’s the tempering simmering away. Once the lentils are done and I’ve taken out the kids’ portion, I pour the remaining lentils into this tempering and they’re flooded with flavour.
My husband and I enjoyed a very spicy, flavourful meal and the kids really like their plain lentils with just a bit of sea salt.