Coconut Curry with Lentils and Green Beans
1 cup green lentils, soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
1 bunch asparagus, sliced into bite-sized pieces
1 can coconut milk
1 cup vegetable stock
1 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
2 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
2 tbsp green curry powder
salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup basmati rice
Ok there’s a lot of steps here but fear not, it’s all pretty basic stuff. First let’s start with the lentils. I prefer to soak mine because I find that they cook drastically faster this way. So after allowing them to soak and re-hydrate I cooked them in UNSALTED water on low heat for only about 15 minutes and they were good to go. Remember, always hold off on seasoning your legumes as salt prohibits cooking.
To make the curry start by sauteing the onions over medium heat with a pinch of salt until they begin to soften. Then add the ginger and curry paste until they begin to release all of their delicious flavor (you’ll smell it). Next comes the coconut milk and veg stock. Bring this to a boil, add in your cooked lentils and lower the heat to a simmer. Cook it gently on low for 20-30 minutes to allow all of the flavors to come together.
While this is cooking away you have time to blanch the asparagus and cook the rice. Blanching simply involves cooking the asparagus in salted boiling water until it is as tender or crunchy as you like it. Then strain it and run it under cold water to set the green color. Set these aside to be added into the curry just prior to serving.
As for the rice, basmati only takes about 15 min so time accordingly. For 1 cup of rice I use 1.5 cups of water (if you use the 2:1 ratio it is way too soupy). Bring the rice, water, salt and pepper (to taste) to a boil, immediately turn it down to a simmer, cover and don’t touch it for 15 minutes. Then you can take it off the heat and let it continue to steam before serving.
See that wasn’t too difficult at all. Now you can serve. Just make sure to check the seasoning on the curry, adding salt and pepper as you see fit. Don’t forget to add in those asparagus to warm them up. Spoonful of rice on the bottom, curry on top and c’est finite!