Spinach Dhal with Chapatis

This recipe works in combination with: Borlotti Bean Bake, Lentil Roast with Pesto Roasted Veg, Mexican Bean Tortillas. This recipe features in these meal plans: Family Vegetarian.

A classic Indian lentil and spinach dahl served with home-made wholemeal chapatis.


  • 1 medium onion (approx 185g), chopped
  • 400ml of coconut milk
  • 200g of spinach leaves
  • 500g lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 200g of wholemeal plain flour
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 400ml vegetable stock, prepared according to the packet instructions
  • 3 tsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 tsp mild chilli powder
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tbsp margarine/butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp medium curry powder
  • 21/2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Serves: 4
  • Course: Main Course
  • Preparation time: 25 mins
  • Cooking time: 30 mins
  • Price per person: £1.02
  • Store cupboard: Typical
  • Calories per serving: 987
  • 5-a-day per serving: 2.2
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Spinach Dhal with Chapatis photo

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  1. To make the chapati dough, sift 150g of flour and the salt into large bowl. Make a well in the centre and add 100ml water and 1 tsp vegetable oil. Use one hand to mix the flour and water in a rotating motion from the center of the bowl outward. Continue to work with your hands until the dough comes together and forms a stiff dough.
  2. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 10 minutes, or until the dough is elastic and smooth. Shape the dough into a large ball, return to the bowl and cover with a damp tea-towel. Set aside to rest for 20-30 minutes.
  3. To make the dhal, heat 2 tbsp vegetable oil in a saucepan and fry the onion, garlic and ginger for 5-6 minutes, or until the onion is soft. Add the chilli powder, curry powder and ground coriander and fry for 1 minute to intensify the flavour. Reserve 4 tsp of the coconut milk for garnish and add the rest to the pan. Add lentils and stock, and if necessary, pour on enough water to cover the lentils. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, or until the lentils are cooked. Add a little extra water if required.
  4. Meanwhile, divide the chapati dough into 8 equal portions. On a lightly floured surface roll each into 15cm (6 inch) discs roughly 3mm thick.
  5. Heat a frying pan over a high heat and dry-fry the chapatis one at a time for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until browned. Brush with the melted butter and cover to keep warm.
  6. To finish the dhal, stir in the spinach and gently cook for 2 minutes, or until the spinach has wilted.
  7. Divide the dhal between warmed bowls and drizzle on the reserved coconut milk. Serve immediately with the home-made chapatis.

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