Split Red Lentil Curry Spiced Dal with Saffron Recipe

Meatless Monday – So for our meatless monday I thought I would have a go at making a couple of dal’s. We have had lentils and mung beans in the cupboard for ages and Paulie cleared out his spice cupboard yesterday so I thought I would use it and put things back in the wrong place again! (lol). The aromas coming out of the kitchen while this was cooking were absolutely delightful. I can’t believe I hadn’t made one of these before it is so tasty and really addictive. The spice blend is just right you can really taste the spices and finish off your mouthful with a hit of chilli at the end that doesn’t blow your head off. It is so cheap and goes a long way. If you like spicy low fat food this is definitely one for you. It only takes half hour to make with no pulse soaking too.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 180g split red lentils
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 2 banana shallots, finely chopped
  • 1/2 litre of vegetable stock
  • 1 large dried bay leaf (make your own recipe here)
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • pinch of saffron strands
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • drizzle of olive oil for frying


  1. Heat the oil in a large pan on a medium to high heat. Add the minced garlic and chopped shallots, cook for 2 minutes stirring constantly so they soften but don’t brown.
  2. Add the chilli powder, turmeric, mustard seeds, cumin seeds and bay leaf. Cook for a further 2 minutes again stirring constantly so that the shallots get coated and the spices cook out.
  3. Add the lentils and stock bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer, stir in salt and saffron and place the lid on the pan. Cook for 30 minutes making sure to stir every 5-10 mins so the lentils don’t stick, I also had to add a splash of water a few times to keep the consistency that I wanted, serve with an indian bread or rice.

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