Spicy Red Lentil Dal with Vegetables

This filling, main course is a snap to prepare and sings with the mingling flavors of ginger, garlic, and cilantro. If you prefer less spice, simply omit the chili pepper. Be sure to prep all the ingredients beforehand for ease. Serve over cooked rice, sprinkled with additional cilantro, if desired.

Serves: 6Hands-on: 10 minutesTotal: 35 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 6


  • 1 medium onion, peeled and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger
  • 1 hot pepper of choice
  • 2 tsp. canola oil
  • 1½ tsp. mustard seeds
  • 1 Tbsp. salt-free garam masala or curry powder
  • 1½ cups red lentils, rinsed well
  • ½ head cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 4 medium carrots, cut into 1" pieces
  • 2 large potatoes, cut into 1" chunks
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 6 cups water
  • ¾ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • ⅛ tsp. freshly ground black pepper


  • Place the onion, garlic, ginger, and hot pepper into a food processor and pulse briefly to chop.
  • Heat the oil in a stockpot over medium heat. When hot, add the mustard seeds. When the seeds begin to pop, stir in the garam masala or curry powder, onion mixture, lentils, cauliflower, carrots, potatoes, turmeric, and water.
  • Raise heat slightly and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 20–25 minutes.
  • Stir in the cilantro and season to taste with freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately.