Hot Flavors for Cold Nights by Robin Nathan

Baby, it’s cold outside! When the cold, grey and dreary days make me long for sunshine and warmth — and a day trip to Florida is out of the question — I put the sunshine in my food.  The flavors of south India are just what my family needs to warm us up, and this quick and easy curry will do just that.

Even though this dish is full of exotic flavors, you’ll easily find everything you need to make it, on the shelves of any large grocery store.  And even better, you’ll be tucking into it in under 40 minutes. Prepare to heat up the night!

Red Lentil Coconut Curry with Rice and Fish
Serves 4
For the Rice
  1. 2 tablespoons Coconut oil
  2. 1 Cinnamon stick, broken in half
  3. 4 Green Cardamom pods, smashed
  4. ½ teaspoon Cumin seeds
  5. 1 cup long grain white rice
  6. 4 cup water
  7. Salt to taste
For the Curry
  1. 2 tablespoons Coconut oil
  2. 1 yellow onion, small dice
  3. 2” piece of ginger, minced
  4. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 1 tablespoon Garam masala
  6. ¼ teaspoon Indian chile powder or cayenne (or to taste)
  7. ¾ cup red lentils
  8. 2 ½ cup water
  9. 14 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  10. 13.5 ounce coconut milk, divided
  11. Salt to taste
  12. 16 ounces cod, cut into 2” pieces
  13. Handful of fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  14. Juice of one lime
  1. Make the rice: Heat the coconut oil in a saucepan, add the whole spices and cook, stirring occasionally until fragrant. Add the rice and coat. Pour in the water, season to taste with salt and bring to a quick simmer. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low and cook undisturbed for 12-15 minutes, or until the rice has absorbed the liquid. Fish out the cinnamon pieces and fluff with a fork. Set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, make the curry: Heat the coconut oil in a large stock pot. When melted, add the onion and ginger and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and dried spices and cook 30 seconds. Add the lentils and stir to coat. Pour in the water, tomatoes, and all but ¼ cup of the coconut milk and season to taste with salt. Bring mixture to boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently until the lentils are barely tender, about 15 minutes. Add the fish to the pot, simmer 5 minutes longer, then cover the pot and remove it from the heat. Let stand undisturbed 10-15 minutes, or until the fish is just cooked through and the lentils are tender. Squeeze in the fresh lime and garnish with the cilantro.
  3. To serve, spoon portions of the rice into serving bowls. Top with ladles of the curry. Garnish with a swirl of the reserved coconut milk and more chopped fresh cilantro.
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

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