Curried Lentil, Quinoa and Vegetable Stew

Flavored with coconut milk, curry, spices and fresh ginger, this easy recipe combines red lentils, quinoa, carrots, kale and red bell pepper to make a hearty vegetarian stew. Despite the long ingredient list, the dish comes together fairly quickly, and any leftovers you end up with will make a great lunch the next day.

Curried Lentil, Quinoa and Vegetable Stew

Curried Lentil, Quinoa and Vegetable Stew

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Richly flavored with coconut milk, curry, fresh ginger and spices, this easy vegetarian stew is made with a hearty combination of red lentils, quinoa, kale and carrots.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup quinoa, thoroughly rinsed
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne, or more to taste
  • Pinch of sugar, optional
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 1-3/4 to 2-1/2 cups vegetable, or chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup red lentils, rinsed
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1-2/3 cups light coconut milk, 13 to 14 ounce can
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 lb kale, stemmed and chopped
  • 3 to 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

  • Place the quinoa and water in a small saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the quinoa is tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the heat, fluff with a fork and set aside.
  • Check out our article on Cooking With Quinoa to learn more.
  • Combine the curry powder, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cayenne and sugar in a small bowl. Set aside.
  • Melt the butter over medium heat in a large saucepan. Add the onion and sauté until soft and translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger, sprinkle with the spice mixture and sauté until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes longer.
  • Stir in 1-3/4 cups of the vegetable broth and bring the mixture to a slow simmer. Add the tomato paste, stir until blended, then add the carrots and continue simmering for 2 minutes.
  • Add the lentils and continue cooking until tender and nearly all of the liquid is absorbed, 8 to 12 minutes. If you find the liquid is evaporating too quickly, reduce the heat and add a little extra broth.
  • Add the bell pepper, stir in the coconut milk and season to taste with salt and pepper. Continue cooking, stirring often, for an additional 2 minutes, then add the kale and combine well.
  • Continue cooking until the kale is wilted and tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the scallions along with the reserved quinoa. You may need to add a little extra broth at this point as well.
  • Taste and adjust the seasonings and continue cooking just long enough for the quinoa to heat through. Stir in the lemon juice and remove from the heat.
  • Spoon individual portions into shallow bowls, garnish with a sprinkle of chopped scallions and serve alongside toasted naan if desired.
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