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Chris Head

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Puy Lentils with Red Wine and Mint

1 tsp olive oil

2 onions, chopped roughly

1 red pepper, chopped roughly

3 cloves garlic, chopped

Sauté over a medium heat for five minutes, stirring.


230g Puy lentils, washed

230ml red wine

200ml stock

Add the lentils and wine and pour over enough stock to just cover the lentils.  Cover and simmer for 25 minutes until tender.  Add extra hot stock if needed.


½ red chilli, chopped finely1 tsp balsamic vinegar

1 ½ tbsp soya sauce

Add five minutes before end of cooking time.


15g mint leaves, thin strips

Stir in just before serving.


This is really good cold the next day, or day after.  I add extra raw garlic and leave it in the fridge to fester!




As for dahl.  Make it up as you go along.  try this - this will make a big pan ...


Chop up 4 medium onions (or slice them thinly if you prefer a bit more texture).  Saute up with some crushed, sliced or chopped garlic.  Cook for 5 mins or so.


Add some spices.   Try the following;


2 tsp black mustard seeds

1 tablespoon cumin powder

1 tablespoon garam masala

1 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp coriander seeds

6 cardamon pods (seeds only)

Red chilli flakes or powder (as little or as hot as you like it ... I like to end up with steam coming out of my ears!)

1 tsp turmeric


You can grind your own spices if you have them, or even use a curry powder mix.


Stir this all into your onion mixure and cook until it all smells great and the mustard seeds are popping.  Add a drop or six of water if it starts sticking to the pan.  You can stir in some tomato puree at this point and gets a nice pastey mix going.


Now, chuck in some diced veg .. I like to put in a few finely diced carrots, maybe some mushroom - don't put in too much veg. 


Stir it all around and then throw in some red lentils (about 350g for those who like to weigh).  Stir it all up and add some choppped tomatoes, or maybe a tin of tomatoes.  Add enough water to cover everything and give the lentils some liquid to soak up.  I throw in a cup of raisins to as I like em in  dahl. 

Bring to the boil, cover and simmer.  Keep an eye on it - red lentils can cook really quickly and if you don't keep it all stirred up, the top layers will take all of the moisture.


I like to stir in a spoon ful of lime pickle as it adds a nice depth of flavour.  Serve with brown rice (hey, I like it!) and pickles and mango chutney.


There, I've made myself hungry now!



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