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This simple dal recipe is full of flavor and easy to make. Red Curry Masoor Dal is made with red curry paste, ginger, garlic, and red lentils. It's an easy meal during the week and it's freezer safe! This spicy red lentil recipe is adapted from Rakhee Yadav's beautiful new book. The | This recipe is vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free.
When I first adopted a vegetarian lifestyle, it didn't take long for me to discover Indian and Asian flavors. Trying new cooking methods and ingredients opened up a world of spices that helped support my new way of eating. I was impressed by the bold flavors of the spices and the ingredients used, I couldn't believe they had gone unnoticed for so long.
To support my aspiration to cook delicious international cuisine at home, years ago I started following bloggers and food chefs on Instagram. Rakhee @BoxOfSpice was one of the first people I connected with. Her beautiful photography and food attracted me. So naturally when he published his first cookbook, I was looking forward to having him in my hands to learn more and cook from the pages of his book.
Written and photographed by Rakhee Yadav, it is a feast for the senses. Recipes filled with vegetables and spices create temptations at every turn. His book is divided into these sections:
- Quick and easy wonders without meat
- Tempting Vegan Power Bowls
- Pleasant and slow plant-based delicacies
- Healthy Snack
Each recipe is backed by Rakhee's beautiful photography and an easy-to-read guide.
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Ingredients for Red Curry Masoor Dal
This simple dal recipe is made primarily from pantry staples. For such a short list of ingredients, it offers great flavor. Rakhee explains that Masoor Dal marries two cultures as if the union had always existed where Indian and Asian flavors come together in a sublime bite. This is what you will need:
- Red Lentils (Masoor Dal)
- Coconut oil
- Ground cumin or cumin seeds
- Red onion
- Red pepper flakes or red chili peppers
- Fresh garlic – a lot (!!)
- Fresh ginger
- Red curry paste
- chilli powder
I traded some spices from everything to earth because that's what I usually have on hand and I love the results. Look for red lentils in bulk containers at the best price.
How to Make Red Curry Masoor Dal
Most of the time you will spend on this spicy red lentil recipe is peeling, grating, and slicing the garlic. There's plenty of garlic in this recipe, but its spicy flavor is balanced by red curry paste and ginger.
PRO TIP: For grated ginger, there is no need to peel it. I put it right on my microplane and I appreciate it! Paper-like skin is thin, tangles beautifully, and goes undetected.
Here's how to make this simple dal recipe:
- FirstIn a large sauté pan, add the coconut oil and heat until shiny. Add onions and sauté, then add cumin, chili, garlic, and ginger. Reduce heat and stir, cooking for just a few minutes.
- SecondAdd the red curry paste until fragrant.
- next, deglaze the pan with water and add the lentils. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook gently for about 10 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer a little more, then remove from the heat and let stand about 5 minutes, with the lid off, to thicken more.
- Latest, stop, heat the coconut oil in a pan. Add cumin (seeds or ground), garlic and chili powder. Cook over medium-high heat for about a minute, stirring until garlic is golden. Remove from the heat and quickly put a spoon on the lentils.
Place the spicy red lentils on top of the rice and garnish with lime, coriander and green chilies. Naan is also great with this recipe!
In his book, Rahkee suggests cooking lentils in a separate pot first, then adding them to the onion-spice mix. I followed this method the first time I made this recipe, but then I tried to cook the lentils in the same pan as the onion mix because it meant one less pot to clean. I found that cooking lentils and onions / spices together works very well and does not affect the texture or the final flavor of the dish.
As noted in the recipe, use whole cumin seeds or ground cumin.
Some recipe notes
- On the temple: This recipe calls for moderation, a technique in which whole or ground spices are heated in hot oil and then placed on the plate. Tempering is an additional step, but it is worth the effort due to the excessive flavor it offers. If you reduce the oil in your diet, opt for a pinch of coconut cream, from a can of coconut milk with all its fat.
- Freezer Friendly? Yes please! Simply transfer the Masoor Dal to a covered individual container, allow it to cool completely, and freeze for up to two weeks.
- Serve with Rice, I like jasmine, and suggests Rahkee, with sliced cucumbers. Share with plenty of coriander, lime, and small chilies for lovers of extra heat.
- Look for red lentils in bulk containers at the best price.
Find Rakhee on his blog, A Box of Spice, Instagram @BoxofSpice and his new book Heavenly Vegan Dals and Curries where books are sold.
More recipes inspired by India and Asia to love
- Bowls of Thai Garlic and Ginger Noodles
- Speedy Miso Mushrooms Ramen Bowls
- Chana Dal with cauliflower and coconut milk
- Cauliflower Potato Red Lentil Curry
- Thai peanut noodle salad
- Thai red curry with aubergines and peppers
Masoor Dal Red Curry (Spicy Red Lentils)
This simple dal recipe is full of flavor and easy to make. Red Curry Masoor Dal is made with red curry paste, ginger, garlic, and red lentils. It is an easy meal during the week and can be frozen! This recipe is slightly adapted from Rakhee Yadav Heavenly Vegan Dals & Curries' beautiful new book. The | This recipe is vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free. Preparation time 20 minutes Cook time 25 minutes Total time 45 minutes Course: Dinner Cuisine: Indian, Vegan, Vegetarian Servings: 4 Calories: 355 kcal
- 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- 1 C (150 g) small diced red onion, about 1 medium onion
- 1 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin or 1 teaspoon cumin seed
- 1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes or 1 finely chopped red chili. leave for less spicy.
- 1 tablespoon (heaped) fresh grated garlic, about 4 medium garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon (heaped) grated fresh ginger, about a 1 ”(2.5 cm) piece
- 3 tablespoons red curry paste prepared
- 1 C (192 g) of red lentils rinsed through a fine mesh strainer (also known as Masoor Dal)
- 3 C (710 g) of water
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
- 1 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin or 1 teaspoon cumin seed
- 1 teaspoon of chili powder
- 4-5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
At your service
- Lemon slices
- Jasmine rice
- Small green chiles like serrano (thinly sliced)
- Sliced cucumbers
- In a large skillet, add the coconut oil and heat until shiny. Add onions and sauté over medium heat for about 3 minutes, or just until slightly softened. Add cumin, red pepper flakes (or chili) if using, garlic, and ginger. Reduce the heat to medium-low and stir, cooking for 2-3 minutes or until the raw smell of garlic and ginger is gone. Garlic and ginger will begin to stick to the pan.
- Add the red curry paste to coat the onions, about 1 minute. For the onion / spice mixture, pour in the water and add the lentils, breaking up any lentils that have stuck when rinsing. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, put a lid on the pan and cook gently for about 10 minutes or until the lentils are soft. Remove the lid and simmer for about 4-6 minutes. Add the salt. The spicy lentils will begin to thicken as they cook more. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand about 3-5 minutes, with the lid slightly ajar. The mixture will continue to thicken as it sets. Depending on the consistency you prefer, share while it is a little loose or serve spicy lentils after it thickens a bit. A jet of water will loosen the lentils slightly if they become too dry. Add a little lemon and stir.
- Heat the coconut oil in a small saucepan and heat until it shines. Add cumin (seeds or ground), garlic and chili powder. Cook over medium-high heat for about a minute, stirring or until garlic is golden. Remove from heat and quickly place temper over lentils and stir OR after placing lentils in individual bowls, place temper on top of lentils.
At your service
- Place the spicy red lentils on top of the rice and garnish with lime, coriander and green chilies. Naan is also great with this recipe!
- Freeze in individual containers to prepare food or in a large container. Thaw in the fridge overnight and gently reheat on the stove. Add a splash of water to loosen the lentils when reheating.
Nutrition is provided as an estimate (per serving) and courtesy. If this information is important to you, please verify it independently.
Calories: 355kcal | Carbohydrates: 46 g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Sodium: 465 mg | Potassium: 725 mg | Fiber: 20 g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1980IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 92mg | Iron: 6 mg