Lentil Dahl with Roasted Butternut Recipe


The modest lentil is often underrated. Lentils are high in nutritional value, easy to prepare and readily available. They’re usually the key component of a hearty Indian Dahl. In Africa lentils are eaten as far north as Morocco and are a staple in most Cape Malay home kitchens in South Africa. This deliciously versatile lentil Dahl recipe absorbs the tasty flavours of the ingredients and spices that accompany it. Serve as a vegetarian main or as a side dish.


Recipe by: GOLD Restaurant
Serves: 8 (as a vegetarian main)
Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 40 minutes


T = tablespoon
t = teaspoon

Lentil base:

  • 300 g brown lentils
  • 30 ml (2 T) vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 15 ml (1 t) fresh crushed garlic and ginger
  • 5 ml (1 t) ground coriander
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) ground cumin
  • 2 ml ((½ tsp) turmeric
  • 2 ml ((½ tsp) paprika
  • 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Litre (4 cups) water
  • Salt and milled black pepper to taste
  • 200 ml (3/4 cup) plain full cream yoghurt
  • A handful of fresh, chopped coriander or parsley

Roasted Butternut:

  • 500 g cubed butternut
  • 60 ml (4 T) vegetable oil
  • Salt and milled black pepper to taste


Lentil base:

  1. Place the lentils in a medium saucepan. Cover generously with half the cold water and bring to the boil. Once boiling, cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes or until al dente (tender but still firm).
  2. While the lentils are simmering: in a separate large saucepan heat the vegetable oil and fry the chopped onion until translucent. Stir in the garlic, ginger and spices. Add the lentil mix from the medium saucepan, tomatoes, remaining water, and season with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for approximately 30 minutes.

Roasted butternut:

  1. Set your oven to 200°c. Scatter the butternut cubes evenly on a roasting tray. Drizzle generously with oil and roast for approximately 20 minutes until lightly charred. Be careful not to overcook, as the butternut will lose its shape when stirring through the lentil base.
  2. Stir in the butternut and yoghurt and heat through gently. Add a sprinkling of fresh coriander or parsley to garnish for extra flavour (coriander in particular) and colour.

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