Vegetable curry

Serves 4–6

Ingredients

For the curry paste
1½ tsp cumin seeds
3 tsp coriander seeds
4 garlic cloves
25g piece fresh root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
50g toasted flaked almonds (or 50g creamed coconut)
1½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp sea salt
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 fresh green chilli, roughly chopped
1 tbsp tomato puree

For the curry
1 tbsp vegetable oil
2 large onions, sliced
1 bay leaf
10-cm cinnamon stick, snapped in half
100g lentils, washed
500g–1kg vegetables of your choice (aubergine, cauliflower, sweet potato,
potato, broccoli, peppers)
1 x 400g can chickpeas, drained
500ml vegetable stock

Method

  1. First make the paste – heat a dry frying pan until hot. Add the cumin and coriander seeds and fry for about 1 minute, tossing occasionally, until toasted. Keep an eye on them.
  2. Take off the heat and transfer to a pestle and mortar and grind. Tip into a blender, add the remaining paste ingredients, plus 2 tbsp water, and whizz until finely chopped, but not completely smooth.
  3. Heat the oil in a heavy based pan and fry the onions until soft.
  4. Add the bay leaf and cinnamon stick and cook gently for 6–8 minutes. Add the lentils, vegetables, chickpeas and the curry paste and cook for 2 minutes.
  5. Pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 40 minutes, or until all the vegetables are cooked. The sauce should reduce and thicken.

Serve with rice (method here) or naan bread.