I have been posting quite a few vegetarian meals recently like this one for baked parmesan mushrooms, or this one for a cheesy chipotle cauliflower casserole. Winter definitely brings out the love of vegetarian food in me. Summer not so much. I am definitely not a salad girl. In winter I can make all these lovely cheesy baked recipes that are nourishing and warming.
But all that cheese is not necessarily a good thing and ages ago my Mum gave me a decent sized container of dried red lentils. I won’t tell you how long ago in case you look askance at the age of my lentils. The lentils have been sitting on my kitchen bench and every time I cook I feel like they are frowning at me for not using them. I hate wasting food and they were definitely making me feel guilty. One of my issues is that I am never sure whether I have to soak them overnight or not. You don’t soak them but I always forget that.
I did a bit of a hunt for red lentil dishes and quite a few soup recipes came up but none that had me thinking I must make that. The reason why there were mainly soup recipes is that red lentils can get mushy when cooked. But I am not actually averse to mushy food. Maybe it brings out the inner child in me. When I had braces I loved eating the jars of baby jelly when my teeth were hurting after an adjustment.
Then I stumbled across this recipe for red lentil and potato curry. Not only did it incorporate those red lentils but it also incorporated potatoes and curried potatoes are one of my favourite foods. My Mum does this fabulous potato curry that I could just about live on. I wasn’t so keen on the idea of carrots – not my most favourite vegetable but figured I probably needed to include them to get some vitamin A in my body. I am not very good on the whole vegetable eating front especially if it means making a separate dish so dishes that are incorporate vegetables are my friend.
What can I say about this recipe except that you have to make it. This is one of the absolutely best recipes I have eaten recently and has the added bonuses of being easy to make and is vegan. The combination of lentils and potatoes gives the curry a lovely substantialness that I sometimes find lacking in vegan food. There is a great mix of sweet and salty flavours from the carrots and stock with an underlying smoky flavour from the curry powder. Could this be umami? I keep reading about umami but can’t get my head around what that actually tastes like.
To make this for one I used the following ingredients:
- ¾ tbs of olive oil – the original recipe had canola oil but I tend to use olive oil for most of my cooking.
- ½ tbs of grated fresh ginger
- ½ tsp of minced garlic (equivalent to half a clove)
- 2 spring onions, sliced, with the white and green parts kept separate
- 1 tsp curry powder – I used Keen’s curry powder.
- 1 medium carrot, fairly finely chopped – mine were about ½ a centimetre (1/2 inch) cubes
- ¼ large potato peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces. I used a King Edward but any floury type potato should work. The recipe suggests a russet potato
- ¼ cup of red lentils
- 1 cup of stock. I used a fake chicken stock cube that my vegan friend assures me is vegan friendly. I use chicken stock (or in this case chicken flavoured stock) much more in my cooking than vegetable stock so I have that in the cupboard rather than vegetable stock. I tend not to have both as I don’t use them quickly enough with only cooking for one.
- ¼ teaspoon of sea salt – I have never seen kosher salt in Australia though I haven’t looked very hard.
- Pinch of black pepper
I followed the instructions from the original recipe simmering for 15 minutes and I served it with some shop bought naan bread but skipped the lime wedges. The naan bread was ok but nowhere near as good as you get in an Indian restaurant. On my to-do list now is to learn to make naan bread so if you have a link for a good recipe please share in the comments. You could also have this with rice. The nuitrition details given with the recipe says it has 374 calories which is just a tad higher than what myfitnesspal suggested when I entered the recipe so in these cases I would err on the higher side.
I thought the preparation time given on the recipe was low, assuming that hands on time is mainly preparation time. To make this took me about 15 minutes of preparation bearing in mind I am a slow chopper. Cooking time was about 20 minutes from turning on the stove to serving. So all up about 35 minutes.
Aside from the quarter of a potato all these ingredients are easy to do in single size portions. To use up the other three quarters of a potato, I made a mashed potato which I then fried alongside an egg for breakfast the next morning. This is one of my favourite breakfasts. My Mum would have made her potato cakes which, slathered with butter, are my all-time favourite breakfast. I must get the recipe off her and share them with you one day.
Note none of this post was sponsored. Products I have mentioned are ones I have purchased and are provided for information.