Red Lentil Dal


Many years ago an Indian friend introduced me to the world of dal.  I’d cooked with lentils before, but always as a soup.  Dal was a game changer for me in the way of cooking lentils.

I make dal just about every week.  We love this warm, filling dish for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  In fact, Mr. B. requests big batches of this dish for the weeks he’s busy with a project. He needs something quick and hearty during the hours he spends out in the shop.

lentils 1

Rinse the lentils in a strainer.

Throw them in a pot of water, turn on the heat, and close the lid.

lentils 2

Chop up an onion.

lentils 3

Saute in a pan with olive oil until translucent. 3-5 minutes.

lentils 4

Add cumin, cayenne, curry, and turmeric.  I use powders because I want to get this meal on the table quick!

lentils 5

Once the lentils have cooked enough to become soft and have absorbed most of the water,scrape the onion mixture into the pot of lentils.

lentils 6

Add a can of tomato sauce and stir.

lentils 7

I always serve this with a side of jasmine rice and broccoli.  Mr. B. likes a little green on his plate.

Naan is always a great side and if you need a little more protein, add a fried egg on top.  This is the perfect breakfast dish!

Red Lentil Dal.  Healthy, quick, warm, filling, and delicious.  And if that isn’t enough, it’s Indian!  Who doesn’t love Indian food?

Now you can make it in minutes in your own home.


Here’s the recipe:

Prep Time:                                                                             Difficulty:

5 min                                                                                        Easy

Cook Time:

20 min.


  • 3 cups of red lentils (I find these at famers’ markets or Indian stores)
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 onion diced
  • Olive oil for sautéing
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (or more if you like heat) of cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 8 oz can tomato sauce


Throughly rinse lentils in a colander over the sink.  Fill a pot with water.  Add the lentils, turn the heat onto medium, and pot on the lid.  Keep an eye on the lentils.  If they start to stick to the bottom add a little more water.  Lentils will cook for about 20 minutes and have a porridge type consistency.

Meanwhile, chop up the onion and sauté in a small skillet with olive oil.  Add the seasons and stir together.

When lentils are ready, add the onion mixture and the can of tomato sauce.  Stir.

Serve with jasmine rice, fried egg, side of broccoli, or naan.




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