Lentils are full of iron, so they are perfect for the body, so it is advisable to make lentil-based dishes
Spinach Lentil Dahl
This Lentil Dal with Spinach Sauce is one of the most delicious, soul-satisfying plant-based, Indian meals! This version is fragrant, flavorful and packed with nutrients- think of this like Saag paneer, but substituting black lentils instead of the cheese! Super tasty and healthy.
This recipe for Spinach Lentil Dal is such a comforting meal: somehow it feels so grounding and nurturing. Not only is it wholesome and nutritious, but it is also bursting with authentic Indian flavor.
3 tablespoons ghee
3 –4 cups cooked black lentils
4 cloves garlic, rough chopped
2 tablespoons ginger, finely chopped
1 medium jalapeno, finely chopped (or 1 serrano)
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon Black mustard seeds
2 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 lb BABY spinach (fresh or frozen)
10 mint leaves
1 teaspoon dried fenugreek leaves
2 tablespoons water (if using fresh spinach)
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 onion, diced
If cooking black lentils and basmati rice, start them first
Make the Spinach Sauce: Saute the onion in ghee, in a large pan, over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, then add garlic, ginger and chilies. Saute until fragrant and golden. Add the fennel seeds, mustard seeds, cumin seeds and garam masala and stir two minutes. Lower heat to low. Add the fresh spinach, mint, fenugreek and water. Cover pan, 2-3 minutes, letting spinach wilt. Give a few stirs.
Blend Spinach Sauce:Place the wilted spinach mixture in a blender and add the 3/4 cups water. Pulse and few times (hold lid down tight). If you want a smooth sauce, blend until smooth. I left a little texture here. Pour it back into the pan, set on low heat.
Combine: Stir in the yogurt, lentils and salt. Taste. Adjust salt to your liking, adding more if necessary! You want this slightly salty because you are serving over rice which will mellow it out a lot. For more heat add a pinch of cayenne or chili flakes. To “up” the flavor add a bit more garam masala spice to taste. If you want a little acidity a tiny squeeze of lemon is nice.
Serve with the basmati rice and naan bread!