This cauliflower and lentil curry is the perfect winter warmer, and great for introducing children to curry. I can say this with certainty as my 3 year old, who gobbled up curry when he was a baby, is going through a fussy patch. I can’t say s*rong or sp*cy anywhere near his food, even if I’m saying it’s not one of these things. I’m the sort of person who loves to try new things – rabbit, octopus, skirt steak, I’ll give it a go. And yet at the moment my son will dislike a new food just on principle.
So I started with a lentil curry, as he can usually tolerate lentils (he can detect a chickpea nearly without fail, but loves hummus, work that one out). I added cauliflower, which we all love . Who doesn’t love cauliflower cheese !?
I then did a little research into South Indian spices, as coconuts are the star of Keralan cuisine (as in my Kerala style sweet potato and adzuki bean curry). Having a very particular three year old we eat a lot of pasta, and a coconut based gravy made a nice change from creamy or tomato sauces. I selected just a few spices and didn’t overdo them. This made the resulting dish aromatic enough for us grown ups, but mild enough for the small one. This time I forgot the chilli powder, and it was still a really tasty dish.
The 3 year old’s plate was practically licked clean.
Is this cauliflower and lentil curry easy?
When I say this is a curry, I mean it’s a spicy dish with Indian inspiration. It isn’t, however, authentically Indian. I’ve used a more modern British cooking technique by cooking it all in one pot with no added fat. This is one of the techniques I discuss in my article on no added fat comfort food.
This meal serves two as a dinner, or more with side dishes. For the ultimate easy meal mop it up with naan bread or chapatti. Do you have a fussy child? I’d love to hear more in the comments!
This quick and easy vegan curry has a silky smooth texture thanks to the coconut milk
- 1 medium cauliflower
- 1 400ml/13.5floz can coconut milk
- 6 oz split red lentils 170g
- 1 cup frozen peas A generous handful
- 2 pinches chilli or cayenne pepper (optional)
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/2 tsp mustard powder
- 400 ml vegetable stock/bouillon 13.5 floz
Slice the leaves and stalk off the cauliflower and chop it. I simply cut a couple of slices lengthways then turn and repeat - as if I was dicing an onion.
Open the can of coconut milk and pour it into a pan. You may need a spoon if the weather has been cold.
Weigh out the lentils and measure the spices, and add them to the pan.
Bring to the boil then simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the lentils are cooked. Stir the pan occasionally and add more water if it starts to stick.