I wanted this dahl to have a really gentle, comforting and nourishing feel to it. Something your digestive system will thank you for and something to warm you from the inside. I think the results of this recipe will provide just that!
Regarding the topping, I am a big fan of strong, lemony flavours while I know that coconut flavours go really well in a dahl. So the topping is essentially toasted coconut, lemon juice, olive oil and coriander all blitzed up into a really flavoursome, tangy topping. It works really well but is of course totally optional.
So have a go and let me know what you think!
- 170 sweet potato, baked (roughly 1 whole small sweet potato)
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 large clove of garlic, finely chopped
- 1.5 tsp ginger, finely grated
- 1tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- ½ tsp ground coriander
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- 1 medium chilli
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 tbsp water
- 185g red split lentils
- 1tsp vegetable bouillon powder
- 700ml water
- Juice of ½ a lemon
- 20g coconut chips or desiccated coconut
- 15g coriander
- 4tbsp olive oil
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C
- Make an incision in a sweet potato and bake in the oven for 40-50 minutes until soft.
- Meanwhile start to prepare your dhal by putting the onion, garlic, ginger, cumin seeds, turmeric, mustard seeds, ground coriander, cardamom, chilli salt and olive oil into a pan and place onto a medium heat. Sautee for 2-3 minutes until the oil has absorbed and you are starting to smell those amazing spicy smells. Gently stir for a further 1 minute before adding the water to the pan and continuing to sauté for a further 2 minutes until all the water has absorbed.
- Make a stock by dissolving the vegetable Bouillon powder (or vegetable stock cube) in the water.
- Add the lentils to the pan and stir through the spices and onions. Then add 300ml of the stock and allow the mixture to simmer for 5-6 minutes until the stock has absorbed. Add a further 300ml of the stock and continue to simmer for a further 10-15 minutes. You want to try and cook the lentils quite slowly as this allows for those lovely flavours to develop. You will know when the lentils are cooked as they start to loose their shape a little and break down into a more creamy texture.
- Meanwhile, to prepare the toasted coconut and coriander swirl, put the desiccated coconut into a pan on a medium heat to toast until golden brown. Transfer to a blender and add the lemon, coriander and olive oil. Blitz until a slightly rough texture and set aside.
- Once the sweet potato has baked, remove the skin and chop the flesh through the dhal. Stir the flesh through until completely incorporated into the dhal – it should be lovely and smooth. Add the remaining 100ml of water and heat through.
- Serve warm with some brown rice and a generous dose of the delicious lemony topping.