Lentil Dahl with rice is one of my favourite easy weeknight dishes to make, and loved by vegans and non-vegans alike in our house. It’s usually on high rotation on the meal planner and so far, nobody is sick of it.. winning! It smells next level while it’s cooking and is full of goodness too.
Top 3 best things I about this dish in my eyes..
Ayurveda is an ancient Indian science around healthy lifestyle principles. Translated from Sanskrit it means science of life (Ayur=life and veda=science). The sister science to Yoga, it focuses on the mind-body connection to preserve and maintain health and there’s a good reason they’re both still so relevant in todays’ world.
Eating a variety of real food and incorporating the 6 tastes – sweet, salty, sour, pungent, bitter and astringent – into each meal is one way to embrace Ayurveda. It helps you feel satisfied for longer, can reduce snacking and overeating and help with your appetite and digestion. The spice mix in this Lentil Dahl recipe covers all of the tastes. Also, consciously preparing your food with love, and transferring good energy to your food before you eat it adds an extra bit of Ayurveda too.
Where do you get your protein though?
As a vegan, this question comes up a lot! Protein is made up of amino acids that are linked by peptide bonds. They are broken back down into amino acids during digestion in order to be absorbed. There are 20 types of amino acids, 9 of which are considered essential amino acids because the body can’t produce them, so they have to be obtained from food sources. So what’s a complete protein? A complete protein is a food that contains all 9 of the essential amino acids. Examples of complete proteins are meat, milk products, eggs, soy, fish and quinoa. Incomplete proteins like oats, rice, wheat, legumes, nuts and seeds are all great sources and when combined, give a good mix of amino acids. Something like Lentil Dahl and Rice (or any other rice and legume staple combo around the world!) are two incomplete plant-based proteins getting together and becoming a complete protein. And they live happily ever after.
Meal preppin’ like a boss
You can make a big batch (double the recipe) and freeze for later. Who doesn’t love that?! I even cook a big batch of rice in the rice cooker and freeze it in separate containers. Easy peasy to grab out and dinner is sorted.
So next time you’re looking for dinner ideas, grab out a big old pot, and give this Lentil Dahl recipe a go. You won’t be disappointed!
- 2 cups dry red lentils
- 1 brown onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 knob ginger, finely grated
- 1 large carrot, finely diced
- 1 red capsicum, finely diced
- 1 handful spinach
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 400ml can coconut milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- Fry onion in a frypan until soft.
- Add garlic, ginger, carrot and capsicum to the pan and cook for a few minutes.
- Add the spices and cook until fragrant.
- Add the lentils and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the coconut milk, spinach and salt and pepper and continue to simmer for a few minutes.
- Remove from heat and allow to stand for a few minutes.
- Serve on basmati rice with some crunchy pappadams. Yum!