I really didn’t know what to name this recipe. What I love about my cooking journey is appreciating ingredients and getting good knowledge in flavor profiles. I called this dish Indian Yellow Lentils because the flavors used to enhance the yellow lentils are Indian in origin. However, I did not follow any recipe. I just threw this together, literally. I am still finishing the stir-in-pastes I have in my fridge.
My wife and I just love Indian flavors. This dish gets it unique flavor from the ginger, garlic and lemongrass stir-in-pastes. The creaminess of the dish comes from the coconut milk. I love to use coconut milk. It adds a mild flavor that is very typical to this region of Asia. I always use coconut milk for any dish that I want to make creamy. It has a lower fat and calorie content than using heavy cream.
This is the first time I have cooked with yellow lentils. Actually, these were yellow dal. Dal is a split lentil. If you want a full guide to the different type of lentils available, check out this link from Indianphile. Compared to red lentils, these lentils took a fair bit longer to cook. When I have cooked red lentils, they took about 8 – 10 minutes to soften. These yellow lentils took a good 15 minutes. As an aside, isn’t it fun to use all these different lentil colors. I love how they color the dish. They each have there own unique flavor and I am learning these flavors as we eat more and more lentils.
- 2 cups Yellow Lentils
- 1 tablespoon grape seed oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon ginger stir-in-paste
- 1 tablespoon garlic stir-in-paste
- 1 tablespoon lemongrass stir-in-paste
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 13.5 ounces coconut milk
- 14.5 ounce can of stewed tomatoes
- 14.5 ounce can of petite diced tomatoes
- 1 bunch fresh spinach
- 1 russet potato, rough dice
- In a pot of boiling water, add the lentils and cook until soft, about 15 minutes.
- Drain and set aside.
- In a skillet on medium high heat, add the oil and cook until warm.
- Add the onions, salt, pepper and garam masala. Cook until softened - 3 - 4 minutes.
- Add in the stir-in-pastes and cook for 1 - 2 minutes.
- Add in the tomatoes and cook for 1 minute.
- Add in the diced potatoes, cover pan and cook for 10 minutes.
- Next, add in the coconut milk, stir well and for 1 minute.
- Next, add the spinach and cook until wilted about 3 minutes.
- Finish by adding in the lentils. Mix well and cook for 2 - 3 more minutes.
- Do not overcook the lentils.
Onions and stir-in-pastes in skillet.
Tomatoes added followed by the potatoes, wilted spinach and coconut milk.
The final plated Indian Yellow Lentils.