Yellow Dal

Lentils are a great source of proteins (check out schmidtcheneats blog post). In central Europe we mainly know lentils from a fairly sour stew, often eaten with some sort of sausages. Other cultures, e.g. India, celebrates lentils in many more different ways. A warm dal can be heartwarming and super delicious.

Yellow Dal

Preparation time: 30 minutes, Servings: 4 people


  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 yellow onion
  • Grated ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Fresh coriander (cilantro) stems
  • Yellow and brown mustard seeds
  • 1 Tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 Tsp fenugreek
  • 1 Tsp Curcuma (turmeric)
  • 1 can of tomato chunks
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 1 cup of yellow lentils
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Fresh coriander leaves


  1. Preparation: Chop the onions and garlic, grate the ginger, thinly slice the stems of the coriander.
  2. Add the coconut oil to a hot large pan. First, add the onions and the stems of the coriander. Let it cook for about 5 minutes over medium heat. Add the garlic and the ginger and let it cook for another 2 minutes.
  3. In the meanwhile grind the spices (coriander seeds, fenugreek, and turmeric). Add to the pan and let the spices heat up for about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato chunks and the coconut milk. Use a bit of water to get all the tomato juice out of the can. Mix everything together. Let it simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. After simmering for 5 minutes add the lentils. Stir occasionally. If the dal gets to thick you can add some water.
  6. Once the lentils are cooked add some salt and pepper to taste.
  7. To finish up, chop some of the coriander leaves and mix into the dal.
  8. You can serve the dal with rice, quinoa, or millet.

Food Fact

If you use herb leaves in your dish you can also try using the stems. The stems are super flavorful, delicious, and can add some texture (crunch). Using the stems increases the efficiency of the herb usage and leads to less food waste. Sometimes the crunch of the stems is not what you are looking for. We often add the stems very early in the cooking process to soften them. Just give it a try the next time you want to use herbs.

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