Ok, first things first. I am calling this dish “Lentils Vindaloo.” However, I have no clue how authentically Indian it is, or if it truly is a vindaloo. I just feel like it – ok!
Ross and I both love Indian food, but since I’m not that great at following recipes I tend to just throw curry into lots of things and call it good. This time, however, I wanted to make an Indian dish that wasn’t bright yellow and didn’t actually involve tablespoon after tablespoon of curry powder. So, I found this Aarti Sequeira recipe (love her, by the way, she is too cute). It involved lots of spice, but no actual “curry powder” – nice! I wanted to make it vegetarian / vegan since we’ve been eating less meat so I swapped in lentils, which are super easy to cook and so nutritious. Also, since I didn’t have any whole spices, I used ground, which worked fine. It also calls for 1/2 cup of vinegar – holy tang! I really like it, and it is a change of pace. Give it a try if you’re in the mood for something a little different.
*serves 4 *based on this recipe
1 cup dry lentils
3 cups water, divided
1 red bell pepper (I used this instead of onions like in the original recipe because I live with an onion hater)
about 5 cups of chopped greens (I used Swiss chard)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. ground pepper
1 tsp. ground turmeric
2 tsps. paprika (I used smoked)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. sea salt
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp. canola oil
Optional: Yogurt or sour cream for topping (this does de-veganize it – whatever)
Optional: Fresh herbs for topping (I used parsley and mint)
1.) Combine all of the spices, salt and garlic with the vinegar. Let sit while you prep everything else.
2.) In a small pot bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the lentils and drop the heat to medium low. Let them simmer for about 20 minutes with the lid om, or until cooked (the water should be gone).
3.) Meanwhile, heat a large pot over medium heat. Slice the red pepper and add it to the pot with the oil. Saute for a few minutes.
4.) Add in the vinegar mixture (stand back – it will clear your sinuses). Stir for about two minutes, until it has tightened up a bit. Add in one cup of water.
5.) Once the mixture has reduced to a “saucy”, but not too thick, consistency (about 10 minutes), add in the cooked lentils and the greens. Cook until the greens have wilted down.
6.) Serve over brown rice. Top with a bit of yogurt or sour cream and fresh herbs if desired.