Vegan Curry – Green Lentil and Spinach Curry
There has been staggering rise of vegans in UK recently. It estimated 350% from 150,000 in 2006 to 542,000 in 2016. Love for animals, helping just a little bit to save our planet and incredible health benefits from planet based diet, there is no reason not to try yourself.
Love the quote from Albert Eistein – “Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to vegetarian diet”
As you reading this, I am, we are – my partner Chris & I are on the 6th day of being vegan. It is great we are doing it together. In the last few days before the 1st March, we had a sort of competition on who finds more vegan food. Not really sure now who bought what but, our kitchen draws, cabinets are a full of yummy vegan food. I have always had ‘love for cooking’ so when decision of being vegan for Lent 2017 came alive, we both knew there will be more ‘home cooking’ involved as when you think which restaurant would prepare vegan food, it could be challenging. Saying that’ yesterday, we went to West Lodge Rural Farm in Kettering with the family and two adorable boys – Louis 4 almost 5 years old and Ellis 2 years. When entered a cafe, the staff was so hospitable and helped to accomodate our vegan choice. Baked potatoes and baked beans and soya cappuccino did go down well there.
Not really into following recipes – like to create my own’ with my own measurements – like Jamie Oliver pinch of this and pinch of that.. but, we decided that the next few weekends, as normally we would have more time, weekends will be cooking at home and following recipes from our new book – Aine Carlin The New Vegan.
I am sort of cook that will pick ingredients from the book or online recipe and chooses how much and when. Chris is much better in following the exact quantity. So I knew I could count on him to prepare ‘cucumber and coconut dressing’ and ‘for the curry powder’ before hand.
It is not going to be exactly as it is on the recipe and the picture I took on featured image does not resemble in the slightest as how is in the Carlin’s book but that’s a beauty about it. You need to tweak it yourself. We all get inspire from others, from each other, then, put something yours’ into it. And, more you do it – whatever that might be, it will slowly become yours – with your style, your flavours – depends how much love and time you put into it.
Here is our favorite Vegan Dish from our 1st V.E.G.A.N weekend – Green Lentil and Spinach Curry
Vegan Curry Dish
We have bought it all, at least we thought we did, preparation was going on the day and once I started cooking, half way through, I got reminded if I have my brown rice ready. I was like; yeah we will use the black rice until I saw it that needed to be soaked for 4 hours prior. I was like – ops. So finding a white basmati rice was our saver. It did not need any flavour added as curry was a full of spicy flavours. It did work perfectly but of course, you can use brown rice if you prefer.
- 1 onion
- 1 carrot
- 1 garlic clove
- thumb size of fresh ginger
- red palm fruit & rapeseed oil for cooking
- 125g dried green lentils
- veg organic stock
- 1 red chilli
- 1 table spoon tomato puree
- 400g coconut milk
- 150g spinach
- 30g fresh coriander
- sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
- brown or white rice to serve
PREPARE BEFORE HAND:
- 2 baby cucumbers
- 2 tablespoons of coconut cream
- juice of 1/2 lime
- 1 spring onions finely chopped
- pinch of salt
FOR THE CURRY POWDER:
- 1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
- 3 cardamon pods
- 1/2 spoon of coconut sugar we used ( palm sugar will also work )
- few black pepercorn
- pinch of cayenne pepper
So let’s get cooking…
You might need something heavier to cook in. We used Le Creuset Signature Cast Iron Round Casserole dish. Pour few drop of red palm fruit & rapeseed oil which is great for cooking. Add cut onions and carrot and fry till is all tender. It would take about 2-3 minutes. After, add dried green lentils ( not soaked ) as you can see on the picture. Then, add all spices – the curry which you prepared before hand e.i. garam masala. The choice is yours here. You can either buy garam masala powder in a supermarket which is about £3.90 or can be prepared from scratch at home, as Chris did. Add coconut milk and vegetables stock. Once is boiling, turn the heat down and cook for about 1 hour.
Before you want to serve, add spinach and coriander and leave it for about 30seconds to 1 minute to cook. Spinach does not need to be cook so within about less than hour will be soft and ready to eat. Once you put into your chosen bowl, add your rice and sprinkle few leaves from fresh coriander.
On the table, we also had prepared grated cucumber soaked in coconut cream. 2 spoons of the cucumber and coconut dressing was added on the top.
I think it was the best curry we have ever made. It was so much flavours going on there that I would not want to add anything else. It could serve 2 hungry people ( that was us on saturday night ) if you have nothing else before hand or 4 people if you have starters. We are having friends over next Saturday for ‘Saturday Vegan Extravaganza’ and, we are already thinking that this Special Vegan Curry Dish should be added too.
Hope you enjoy making this dish as much as I did! It’s fun just give yourself enough time for preparation.
All my vegan food love,