How to Cook Lentils

My favourite way to eat lentils right now, is to serve them with some brown rice, a dollop of natural yoghurt on top, and a green salad. Here’s the lentil recipe I use:

Dhal Curry

Adapted from Delia Online

8 oz (225 g) red lentils
2 level teaspoons ground ginger
1 level teaspoon ground cumin
1 level teaspoon turmeric
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon rice bran oil
1 large onion, peeled and grated
1 red chilli, de-seeded and chopped
1 level teaspoon Madras curry powder
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tin of tomatoes
Salt and cracked black pepper


  1. In a saucepan containing 1½ pints of water add one teaspoon each of ginger, cumin and turmeric, then bring it all to the boil. Stir in the lentils, let it come back to a gentle simmer and cook for 5 minutes.
  2. After that add the diced potato and continue cooking until the lentils have turned mushy (making sure the mixture doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan by giving it a stir now and again).
  3. While that’s cooking, heat up the butter and oil in another pan, and fry the onion and pepper in it (over a fairly high heat) until the onion has browned – then lower the heat and stir in the Madras curry powder (if you like your curries hotter, you can add more), the garlic, the remaining ground ginger and the tomatoes.
  4. Cook for a minute before adding the lentil mixture, then taste, season and cook gently for a further 5-10 minutes (stirring from time to time).

I think this recipe is super-delicious, I hope you enjoy it too!

Have you tried lentils? Do you eat them alone, or combine with other foods?

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About Melanie
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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Ruth August 2, 2010 at 6:26 pm

Love the lentil dhal!! One of my favourites. Must try the others. :) x


Melanie August 12, 2010 at 9:00 am

Hi Ruth,
I love lentils, so healthy but really satisfying, too! :-)


Ruth August 2, 2010 at 6:29 pm

Ps… try adding smoked back bacon to the soup! Delicious flavour!!:):)


Menekse August 4, 2010 at 1:42 am

We add lentils to curry when we make it at home – my brother eats *so* much because of all his training – these are really great for padding out curries/stews etc. and filling him up! Plus, they really are delicious! Thanks for the ideas, Melanie!


Melanie August 12, 2010 at 10:37 am

Hi Menekse,
I agree, I also add chickpeas to my curries to bulk them out and make the meal go further, too :-)


toko online August 7, 2010 at 9:41 am

i love lentil…

i found it in mart but didn’t know how to cook it


Melanie August 16, 2010 at 3:07 pm

I hope this has given you some ideas…. :-)


Jurga August 8, 2010 at 7:39 pm

I use lentils to make a salad by adding some grilled and chopped bacon, some chopped tomatoes, cucumber, grilled and skinned pepper, avocado, sun-dried tomatoes, feta cheese and a simple dressing made from olive oil and vinegar (I’ve addapted this recipe from Merchant Gourmet website as it was there I first came accross the Black Beluga lentils). :)


Melanie August 16, 2010 at 3:10 pm

Agh… sounds delish!!! I might give it a go. What type of lentils do you use for this salad?


Ruth March 2, 2011 at 2:14 pm

This sounds sooooooo good. wouldn’t have thought of lentils in a salad. Thankyou!!!


lipo August 12, 2010 at 10:22 am

Having a slight Indian background does come in useful sometimes, especially when it comes to the hugely cultured food. From a young age, I have been introduced to lentils, though at start I hated it, it then grew on me and now I have it daily, and love it! It provides the necessary nutrients you need to grow and repair your muscles.
.-= lipo´s last blog ..Liposuction =-.


Taleen March 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm

This has inspired me a little tonight!! Yum! Thank you!!! :D


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