Element restaurant recipe: Red Lentil Dahl

To announce the arrival of their new à la carte menu, Edinburgh's Element offer us this delicious recipe for red lentil dahl

Published: February 29, 2016

1 Heat up some oil in a pan, add the cinnamon stick, star anise, cardamom, cloves, and mustard seeds and leave it for 30 secs or until it starts to "sizzle".

2 Turn down the heat to medium and add the onion and cook until the onions are brown (but not burned!). Once you’ve reached the desired colour add the ginger, chilli and garlic and stir well and continue to cook for another minute and then add the remaining spices.

3 Continue to cook for approx. 30 seconds whilst stirring the mix, then add the tomato paste and finally the red lentil, mix it through well and then add cold water (enough to cover the red lentils twice). Bring it up to boil and simmer, stirring occasionally until the red lentils are cooked.

4 Season to taste and serve with chopped coriander, tzatziki, warm tortilla, and a lime wedge. Delicious!




  • 5 cups red lentil (rinsed)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 star anise
  • 6 cardamom pods
  • 8 cloves
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp. turmeric, ground coriander, ground cumin
  • 1/2 tbsp. ground nutmeg, gram masala, chilli powder
  • 3 onions finely chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 thumbs ginger finely chopped
  • 1 green chilli finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • Salt and pepper
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