Curried red lentil dhal with roast pumpkin and peshwari topping

Like a hug in a bowl: Peshwari topped dhal with curry-roasted pumpkin and greens.
Like a hug in a bowl: Peshwari topped dhal with curry-roasted pumpkin and greens. Photo: Katrina Meynink

All the elements of peshwari naan (flatbread stuffed with nuts and dried fruit) combined with the comforting heat of the dhal, the hit of chilli and the sweet musky taste of curry-spiced pumpkin.


Peshwari topping

2 tbsp desiccated coconut

200g flaked almond, toasted

½ cup sultanas, roughly chopped

¼ cup coriander, chopped

¼ cup mint leaves, chopped

1 green chilli, sliced (remove the seeds to reduce the heat)

Roasted pumpkin and greens

½ butternut pumpkin, sliced into 3cm thick slices

1½ tbsp ghee (or coconut oil)

1 tbsp Madras-style curry powder (or medium-strength curry powder)

1 bunch broccolini, washed


1½ cups split red lentils, rinsed

50g finely grated ginger

1 tsp ground turmeric

1½ tsp Sri Lankan curry powder

1 cinnamon quill

8 fresh curry leaves

500ml coconut milk

1 onion, thinly sliced

juice of 1 lime, plus extra lime wedges to serve

350ml vegetable stock


1 tsp rice bran (or flavourless) oil

1 tsp brown mustard seeds

1 red onion, thinly sliced

5 curry leaves


1. Combine the topping ingredients in a small bowl and set aside until ready to serve.

2. Preheat the oven to 180C.

3. Toss the pumpkin with the ghee and curry powder and place the pieces on a large baking tray lined with baking paper. Roast for about 30 to 40 minutes or until golden, caramelised and cooked through. If the spice coating looks like it is burning, reduce the temperature to 160C.) Add the broccolini to the tray for the last eight to 10 minutes of cooking.

4. Meanwhile, make the dhal. Combine the dhal ingredients in a medium-sized saucepan and over medium heat. Simmer, covered, until the lentils are breaking down (about 20 to 25 minutes).

5. For the onion mixture add the rice bran oil to a small saucepan. Add mustard seeds, red onion and curry leaves and cook, stirring constantly to prevent catching, until the onion has softened and the mixture is fragrant.

6. To serve, add the dhal, pumpkin and broccolini to a serving platter. Top with the onion mixture and peshwari topping. Serve with steamed rice (optional).

More dhal recipes

Find more of Katrina Meynink's recipes in the Good Food Favourite Recipes cookbook.

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