Lentils are cheap, easy to prepare and go well with most things as a side dish. Lentils have been cultivated and consumed since ancient times. They come in many colours - pictured left are red lentils. They are an excellent source of protein, iron & fibre. They can be prepared in a number of dishes, from soups to stews, with or without accompanying vegetables and/or meat. This recipe wil show you how to make Red Lentil Dal.

  • 2-3 cups of red lentils
  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • Small stick of cinnamon (not powdered)
  • Dash of chilli powder
  • Fresh coriander
  • Oil for frying (Groundnut preferably)


Wash the lentils and remove any impurities. Put the lentils in a pot with water, bring to the boil and let simmer for 10-15 minutes. Once finished, drain, mash to a creamy consistency and set aside. Chop the onions and garlic finely. Fry the cinnamon bark and onions in some oil until golden, then add the garlic and fry for a minute longer. Add the lentils and fry. Then add the chilli powder and salt & pepper to taste. At the end, mix in some roughly chopped fresh coriander leaf.