Easy Veggie Thali

1 lemon, zest pared and juiced
½ tsp mustard seeds
3 cardamom pods, bashed
1 cupful basmati rice

250g red lentils
1 tsp turmeric
1 onion, grated
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 red chilli, shredded
1 tsp garam masala

1 x 250g block paneer, cut into cubes
groundnut oil
1 onion, grated
a small chunk root ginger, finely grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
300g spinach, washed and chopped

1/2 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
a handful mint leaves, chopped
a handful coriander leaves, chopped
200ml natural yogurt

1 onion, chopped
sunflower or veg oil
1 large aubergine, cut into chunks
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp nigella or black onion seeds
1-2 green chillies, finely chopped
1 punnet cherry tomatoes
Handful coriander leaves

For the lemon rice, cook the lemon zest and spices in a little oil until fragrant. Add the rice and stir well. Tip in 2 mugs of water and 1 tsp salt, bring to a simmer, put on a lid and cook until water is absorbed and rice cooked. Add a splash of lemon juice to serve.

To make the dhal, put the lentils and turmeric in a pan and add water to cover by 2cm. Season and simmer for about 20 minutes until tender, adding more water if needed. Heat some oil in a pan then cook the onion, garlic and chilli for a few minutes. Add the garam masala, cook for a minute then stir into the cooked lentils.

For the saag paneer, fry the paneer in a little oil until golden. Add the onion, ginger, garlic and spices, and cook until softened. Add the spinach and a splash of water and cook until wilted.

To make the onion raita, mix everything together just before serving and season.

Make the aubergine and tomato curry by frying the onion in oil until soft. Tip onto a plate. Add a little more oil to the pan and fry the aubergine in batches until browned all over and tender. Add another slug of oil to the pan and fry the spices for 30 seconds, add back the aubergine and onion, plus the cherry tomatoes, green chillies and cook everything until the tomatoes have burst. Season with salt and scatter with coriander leaves.

Serve in the traditional way with little dishes of each thing on individual trays or do sharing plate style and put everything in bowls in the middle of the table.

Original post with credits


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