This dal makhani recipe from Alfred Prasad infuses ginger, garlic, ground spices, and tomatoes with an indulgent cream sauce to delicious effect. This is a wonderful Punjabi black dal to cosy up to on a rainy day, paired with naan bread or a fragrant bowl of rice. Kasoori Methi is available to buy online or in Indian supermarkets.
Dhal, dal, daal – however you spell this ubiquitous Indian dish of split lentils flavoured with an aromatic spiced oil (known as a tarka), it's always delicious and comes in countless varieties and flavours. In this version, Will Bowlby adds a generous amount of garlic, fried until golden, along with spices, curry leaves and chillies.
Dominic Chapman pairs the delicate flavour of sea bass with the punch of Indian spices with his tarka dhal recipe. An aromatic mixture of soft yellow lentils cooked slowly with toasted spices including cumin, coriander and ginger, the dhal is finished with fresh cherry tomatoes and coriander for balance.
This curried scallops recipe from Jersey-based chef Shaun Rankin, is an impressive seafood starter to wow your dinner party guests and is easy to prepare, just remember to soak the lentils the night before. Scallops should be bought in the shell, that way you know they haven't been soaked in water to increase their size and weight. Your fishmonger can prepare them for you.
This incredible dhal recipe from Bangladesh boasts bags of flavour for minimal effort. Toasting the lentils first provides a nutty aroma which complements the spices beautifully, while tempering the delicious ghee with chillies and garlic results in an unctuous finish. Vegetable ghee is available if you wish to keep the dish vegan.
This grilled sea bass recipe from Vineet Bhatia has a wonderful mix of textures. Make sure you cook the okra just before serving in order for them to be wonderfully crisp. Carom (ajwain) seeds, gram (chickpea) flour and chaat masala spice blend are all easily found online or from Indian grocery stores. For more inspiration see our entire fish curry collection.
If you're a fan of falafel, then you're going to love these Mauritian dhal fritters. Known as gateaux piments, these lentil-filled fried balls are packed with the flavours of tangy spring onion, fresh coriander and fiery green chilli. They're great served as a light snack or starter, or crushed inside a crisp white baguette for lunch. The Island Kitchen by Selina Periampillai (Bloomsbury, £26.00) is out now. Photography by Yuki Sugiura, 2019.
When it comes to easy, fuss-free curry recipes lentil dhal is hard to beat. Alfred Prasad's dhal recipe uses moong lentils which are skinned, split mung beans and a similar vivid yellow to split peas. Perfect served as a creamy vegan side dish, this recipe can also be scaled up and served with rice as a main meal in itself.