Saturday, 14 November 2009

Spicy Indian Dahl with Mashed Potatoes (vegetarian)

This is a really cheap meal if you have all the spices on hand.


  • 25g Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 225g red or brown lentils
  • 700ml water
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro (optional)

For the dahl, heat the butter and oil in a saucepan, and add the onions, garlic, cayenne and a pinch of salt. Cook on a low heat until the onions are soft.

Tip in the lentils and stir for a few seconds before adding about 150ml water. Simmer until the water has been absorbed by the lentils. Continue adding the rest of the water, and cook until the lentils are soft and the water absorbed. Add the cumin, turmeric and chopped coriander and serve piping hot. (As an alternative, just cook the lentils on their own and when soft add them to the saute above. Then add the spices.)

Mashed Potatoes
  • 1kg Potatoes, even-sized, scrubbed, unpeeled
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 50g Butter
  • 200ml hot milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Garam Masala
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro (optional)

For the mashed potatoes, boil the potatoes for five minutes in water to cover. Continue cooking on a lowish heat now. After about 15 minutes, add the whole garlic cloves to the pan, and continue cooking until the potatoes are tender. Mash potatoes and garlic together, then add the butter and incorporate. Add boiling milk, the chilli, garam masala and chopped coriander. Serve straight away with the dahl.

Serves 4 (This meal costs about £0.22/person.)

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