Sunday, January 20, 2013

Ethiopian Red Lentil Stew with Cauliflower, Baby Kale, Peas and Potatoes

red lentil stew with many veggies

What the heck does an Ethiopian eat? I know they typically scoop their food with injera, a spongy flat bread. They also cook with wonderful spices such as a spicy Berbere Blend. The blend I purchased from Summit Spice and Tea consisted of paprika, onion, cayenne, garlic, ginger, salt, fenugreek, basil, pepper, turmeric, allspice, cumin, cinnamon, cardamon, clove, and mace. Whew, that's a lot of spices so save yourself some time and just buy the blend.

This recipe was inspired by Anshu's Red Lentil Sambar in Vegan Fire and Spice by Robin Robertson. I've made it before and every time I change ingredients depending on what I have on hand. The recipe in the book uses Indian Sambar spices. I've also made it with Panch Phora (a whole seed blend of fennel, cumin, brown mustard, nigella, and fenugreek). This is a very forgiving recipe and it's easy to mix and match. This is even better reheated.

Ethiopian Berbere Stew
1 cup red lentils
3-1/2 cups water
splash of avocado or extra virgin olive oil
1/2 med. onion chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
1 TB chopped fresh ginger
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp brown or black mustard seeds
1/2 to 1 tsp Berbere spice blend
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 cup vegetable broth
14 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 TB Tamari
1-1/2 tsp Bragg's liquid amino sauce
1 cup chopped cauliflower
1 medium russet potato, chopped
1 cup frozen peas
4 handfuls baby kale

Pick through the lentils and rinse off. Place in medium saucepan with water and bring to a boil, cook for about 30 minutes until soft. Set aside. Do not drain.

Heat oil in large stock pot and saute onions, carrots and ginger until onions are soft. Add garlic and cook for a couple minutes. Add spices, stir and cook for about a minute. Add rest of ingredients, bring to a simmer and cook for about 15-20 minutes until cauliflower and potato are soft. Add cooked lentils, peas, and baby kale and cook for about another 5 minutes until kale is wilted and everything is good and hot.


  1. Very nutritious food. I like it. Yummy!

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  2. Good foods. Very delicious. Thanks for sharing this beautiful recipe. Hope you can visit my simple delicious filipino foods . THanks