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Tarka Dal with Crispy Kale

Tarka Dal with Crispy Kale

Prep time:

Cook time:

Serves: 4

Dal is a hearty meal that’s easy to make and a great way to feed a hungry family for less. For those colder, darker days when all you need is something comforting, try this simple (incidentally vegan) dal recipe with earthy turmeric,fresh and fiery ginger, and a warming hint of chilli. Finish with tarka, a fresh pan-fried topping of spices, tomatoes and garlic, and crispy roasted kale.

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  • 200g British sliced kale, stalks removed
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 450g red lentils
  • 2 tbsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tbsp chilli flakes, (add another tsp of chilli flakes if you like spice)
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 50g tomatoes, diced
  • 2 large garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 large thumb of ginger, finely chopped
  • 2½ tbsp garam masala


Step 1

Preheat the oven 160°C/140°C fan/gas 1. Add the kale to a bowl and massage in 2 tbsp of oil, lemon juice and salt. Evenly spread the kale over two large baking trays and cook for 15-20 mins, turning halfway through, or until the kale becomes crisp.

Step 2

Meanwhile, rinse the lentils under cold water until the water runs clear. Add the lentils, turmeric and chilli flakes to a large pan with 1 litre of water and gently bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for 30-35 mins, adding more water if you need and stirring regularly, until tender and thickened. Skim the top during cooking to get rid of any excess froth.

Step 3

For the tarka, in a separate small frying pan over a medium heat add the remaining oil and diced onion and cook for 5 mins or until softened. Add the tomatoes, garlic and ginger and cook for a further 2 mins or until the tomatoes are starting to break down. Stir through the garam masala for 1 minute more until smelling fragrant.

Step 4

Once the dal is ready, serve in big bowls topped with the tarka and plenty of crispy kale.

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