Indian food is known for being enticingly fragrant (and delicious) and this spicy Indian lentil dhal is no exception. It’s a buttery, fiery, and wholesome dish – total comfort. And it’s remarkably versatile – serve it as an appetizer or side with pita bread or use it as the protein (lentils have plenty atop a simple salad. Seriously, it’ll take your healthy lunch salad to new heights of flavor.
And the versatility doesn’t end there. Spicy Indian lentil dhal can also (and easily) transform into a fragrant and hearty soup. Just add some extra water to this recipe based on your desired soup thickness. You may also need to adjust some spices to fit – particularly the curry powder. And, of course, that cayenne pepper powder may need a pinch more to keep the heat at a comparable level.
This is also one of those “make on Sunday, enjoy all week” type of meals – perfect for those lunch salads! In terms of storage and reheating, you can store spicy Indian lentil dhal in Tupperware for up to five days. Simply reheat a portion on the stove or microwave until piping hot.
See it being made:
Like this recipe? You’ll love these too:
- Spicy Roasted Chickpeas: Crispy with bold spiciness.
- Daltjie Chili Bites: They may look weird, but the flavor is out of this world.
- Tandoori-Style Chicken: Quick and easy to make!
Spicy Indian Lentil Dhal
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 onion
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 inch fresh ginger
- 1 red chili jalapeno or birdseye work well
- 1 cup orange lentils a.k.a. red lentils
- 1 cube vegetable stock or chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons curry powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper powder
- 1 cups boiling water
- Place a large sauce pan over medium heat and add the butter. Stir occasionally until melted.
- Peel and finely chop the onion, garlic, ginger, and chili. Add them to the butter then cook for 5 minutes until the onions are translucent and beginning to brown.
- Add the cumin, turmeric, curry powder, and cayenne pepper. Stir for a few minutes until they become fragrant.
- Crumble in the stock cube and add the boiling water. Stir until dissolved.
- Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, topping up with water if required.
- Remove from the heat and serve with pita bread or atop a salad.