14 October 2013

Spinach and Coconut Dal


This is one of our favourite weeknight meals. It takes less than half an hour to make and basically you just throw all the ingredients into a pot and let it bubble away.

It tastes glorious, which is probably why we have it nearly every week and
Cooper loves it too which is an added bonus as it's filled with lentil and spinach goodness. Its also high in protein and rich with B vitamins, thiamine and folic acid, as well as iron and zinc

We like our dal as the star of the show with some toasted pitta bread for scooping. I know, I know pitta bread is generally thought of as Greek or Turkish fare, but they're great when you're in a hurry. Just throw them in the toaster for a few minutes to get nice and crispy, then get stuck in. They are also far less calorific than naan bread and many other flatbreads, which is another point in their favour.

One pot of dal feeds three of us for two nights. It's a very frugal meal and can also be turned into a lovely soup with the addition of some extra stock.



Last night we had guests for dinner, so we broke from tradition and had our dal alongside chickpea curry, aloo saag, cucumber & mint raita, pickled red onion and rice. Boy was I tired by the time we sat down to eat, but it was worth it. I wish I had photos for you, but it was just too dark for any decent shots and we were all ravenous.

Do try this. You'll love it!


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Spinach and Coconut Dal
A delicious, but frugal family meal, that can be thrown together in under half an hour. Great for during the week, when you get in from work late and need to put a meal on the table.
Ingredients
  • 400g red lentils
  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 600ml vegetable stock (3 stock cubes)
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 200g spinach, wilted and chopped
  • a handful of fresh coriander
  • a good grinding of black pepper
Instructions
1. Rinse the lentils really well under cold running water, then add to a large heavy based pot with all the ingredients bar the spinach, coriander and pepper. Bring to the boil, reduce to a gently simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.2. Add the spinach and cook for another 5-10 minutes or until the lentils are soft.3. Add the coriander and stir through. You may add a little more stock or water, if you feel it needs it. Then season with black pepper and serve.Notes: I wash my spinach, then wilt it in a colander by pouring a kettleful of boiling water over it, I then refresh it with cold water, squeeze as much water out of it as I can and then chop it. You can also use frozen spinach and coriander in this recipe. If I use frozen, I tend to throw in about 3 or 4 little bundles of spinach and 2 or 3 cubes of coriander.
Details
Total time:
Yield: Serves 4-6


I'm submitting my dish to a few of this month's challenges. It's definitely a dish to be shared.

Cooking with Herbs

Which is hosted by my friend Karen over at Lavender and Lovage. For this challenge I am highlighting the coriander in my dal.

30 Minute Meals

My dal, just comes in under 30 minutes, so I am submitting it to a new challenge called appropriately, Under 30 Minutes.

I'm looking forward to getting lots of new ideas from this challenge which is hosted by Vardhini over at Cooks Joy.

Credit Crunch Munch
I am also submitting my dal to Michelle over at Utterly Scrummy Food for Families. Credit Crunch Munch is usually hosted by Helen over at Fuss Free Flavours or Camilla over at Fab Food 4 All, but Michelle is kindly taking over the reigns this month.

My dal is very frugal. I buy a large bag of dal cheaply in the Indian section of my local Tesco and my coconut milk from Home Bargains, where it is a good 50p cheaper than in most supermarkets. 

44 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. It is Akheela, it's super tasty. My hubby is sick of me saying "Mmmmmm! This is soooooo good!" every time I make it.

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  2. This went straight into the to-try folder!

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  3. This has gone straight inot the to-try folder! x

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  4. This looks divine!! I'm impressed that Cooper will eat this... I must try it out on my boys and see if they'll go for it. I like the idea of using pittas for scooping... that could be the key to getting Sam and Arlo interested as they love any kind of interactive food!!! Great pix btw :-)

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    1. Thanks Katie,

      He loves it and will happily eat it with a spoon without the pitta, although he does love dunking. The secret for wee ones is to cut the spinach finely, so there are no long strands.

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  5. The daal looks yummy :) Love the colour.

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  6. "Your dal is good, your dal IS good!"
    And

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    1. Thanks And. I'm glad you liked it and pleased to hear you have made some yourself.

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  7. Love a good dal! Such an easy meal to throw together on those busy nights. Yum!!

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  8. What a delicious recipe, perfect for the cooler nights now autumn is well and truly here. I'll definitely give it a try, might use Chard instead of spinach as we have a huge glut of it from our allotments. :)

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    1. That's a great idea Michelle. I hope you enjoy it :)

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  9. This looks like such a great fresh dinner idea! Thanks for sharing

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  10. Delicious! Thanks for sending to Credit Crunch Munch!

    I mainly use coconut milk powder for my dals as it is really cheap (much more than tinned) but inexplicably they add whey to lots of them which would make it unsuitable for your vegan husband.

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    1. I'll have to look out for that Helen. Thanks :)

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  11. I adore Dal and yours sounds delicious. I have yet to find a recipe that I am 100% happy with - definitely going to give yours a try. x

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    1. Well I hope this is the one for you Anneli. Do let me know what you think :)

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  12. This looks wonderful! I miss Indian food so much now I live in Italy! Will be trying this out on the Italians!

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    1. I wonder what they will think of it Elizabeth.

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  13. This looks like a tasty recipe, we love lentils and spinach so we'll definitely try it!

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    1. It's definitely the one for you then Ren. Hope you enjoy it :)

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  14. This sounds fantastic, three of my favourite foods, lentils, spinach and coconut all in one dish. Thank you for sharing!

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  15. I love dahl! Definitely pinning this one. :)

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  16. I love how simple this it yet packs such a healthy punch.

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    1. It's super healthy and tasty Bintu. I don't think you can beat it!

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  17. Look at the colour of that daal, wow! Great job Jacqueline! I bet it tastes smooth and comforting. Have you tried mixing daals? Urdu daal and red lentil daal with spinach are so good together. Also, if you cook them in yoghurt and gram flour it provides a bit of tasty variety x

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    1. No, I'll have to try that Deena. Thanks for the tip :)

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  18. I'm definitely going to make this! It is obviously very cheap, but most importantly for me is tomato free which I find actually limits a lot of dal recipes. I shall let you know how it goes, love the blog by the way.

    If you want to, please have a look over the recipes on my student lifestyle blog at http://ninegrandstudent.wordpress.com/

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    1. I know you will love it. Thnaks for stopping by :)

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  19. A fabulous recipe Jac and one that I would enjoy! Thanks for adding it to Cooking with Herbs.

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  20. This looks so so good, I must make this, it contains so many ingredients I love!

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  21. This is going on my "to do" list right now!

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  22. I'm planning on buying these ingredients for tonight's dinner. It looks like such a comforting dish Jac!

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  23. I am very confused here, although this recipe looks very nice, It does not feature any tinned tomatoes! I thought this was supposed to be a tinned tomatoes website. Can you please explain what is happening?

    @cynth_Fielding Cynthia Fielding

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    1. Hi Cynthia, I named my blog tinned tomatoes many years ago as so many of my dishes contained them, it was my starting point. While some of my recipes still do contain tinned tomatoes, this site is primarily vegetarian and vegan recipes.

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  24. Hi Jacquie! I absolutely adore this recipe! I've made it several times , and it gets eaten up very quickly!! Super simple and insanely delicious!!

    Donna Forbes

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    1. Here too Donna. We have it regularly. It's so easy to make, sneakily healthy and tastes wonderful. I am so glad you are enjoying it too. Thanks for letting me know. You've made my day :)

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I love reading comments, so thank you for taking the time to leave one. Unfortunately, I'm bombarded with spam, so I've turned on comment moderation. I'll publish your comments as soon as I can and respond to them. Don't panic, they will disappear when you hit publish. Jac x