Beren (beren_writes) wrote,

Recipe: Red Lentil Tikka Masala With Rye Barley Roti (from the Times)

This is a recipe from the Times Eat pullout special with low cal recipes. It's another one I tried for a fasting day on the 5:2 diet and it's really tasty and filling. However, the recipe is very spicy, way too spicy for me and I didn't even use the full amount of spice suggested in the original.

Red Lentil Tikka Masala With Rye Barley Roti
Serves 4 (original) or 2 (my ingredients list)
218 cal per portion (396 with Roti)

Image taken from the Times website
Original recipe masala paste (for 4)
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 tsp smokes parprika
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds (dry fried and ground)
  • 1 tsp coriander seed (dry fried and ground)
  • 2cm root ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • salt and pepper
  • handful of fresh coriander
Recipe I used masala paste (for 2)
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2/3 tsp chilli paste (next time I'm going to use a third of this)
  • 1 tsp smoked parprika (next time I'm going to use half of this)
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds (dry fried and ground)
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seed (dry fried and ground)
  • 1cm root ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 tsp groundnut oil
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • salt and pepper
  • handful of fresh coriander
Original recipe for the curry (for 4)
  • 1.5 tsp groundnut oil
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 tbsp masala paste
  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 250ml vegetable stock
  • 200g red lentils
  • 4 generous handfuls of young spinach leaves washed (~200g)
  • 2 tbsp low-fat natural yoghurt
Recipe I used for the curry (for 2)
  • several squirts of oil spray (the 1 cal a spray stuff)
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed (I like garlic :))
  • 1 tbsp masala paste
  • 200g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 125ml vegetable stock
  • 100g red lentils
  • 2 generous handfuls of young spinach leaves washed (~200g)
  • 1 tbsp fat free greek style yoghurt
As you can see I reduced the amount of oil as much as I could, especially in the curry because it was only for frying and the spray worked just fine.


The original recipe says to use a processor for mixing the masala paste, but I used a pestle and motar because I couldn't be arsed to get it out and then have to clean it all :). If you are using the processor see instruction 2, if you are using a pestle and mortar see instructions 3 to 8.
  1. Put the coriander seeds and cumin seeds in dry pan and heat until you can spell their scent rising and they are toasted. Then crush them in the pestle and mortar.
  2. Using a PROCESSOR: Add all the ingredients for the paste and pulse until well combined and mostly smooth (jump to instruction 9).
  3. Using a PESTLE and MORTAR: Add the oil to the crushed seeds in the mortar and mix in.
  4. Add the garam masala and work together.
  5. Add the chilli and work together.
  6. Grate the ginger (I used one of these, which are brilliant for garlic and ginger) and add, working it in with the pestle.
  7. Add the tomato purée and salt and pepper and work in.
  8. Chop the coriander and add a little at a time, working in with the pestle each time.
  9. Now you're on to the curry. Spray the pan and add the onion, cooking on a medium heat until it has softened, usually about 4 or 5 minutes.
  10. Add the garlic and cook for another minute or so.
  11. Add the masala paste and stir in to release all the flavours.
  12. Add the tomatoes.
  13. Add the vegetable stock and bring to the boil.
  14. At this point I used a hand held blender to smooth out the sauce because I don't like lumps of onion and tomato in things, but feel free to leave out this step. Once blended return to the heat and bring back to the boil.
  15. Add the lentils, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 mins (because I had blitzed the sauce it was quite thick, so I covered it while it simmered as well to keep in the moisture).
  16. Take off the heat, allow to cool a little and add the spinach leaves, allowing to wilt in the heat.
  17. Serve with a dollop of yoghurt and a warm rye, barley roti (see next).
Now I do have to say I haven't tried to make the rye barley roti because I was going for the really low cal option, but I'm including it for completeness and it looks tasty :). If I do make them I'll come back and edit the post with any observations I make.

Makes 8
  • 100g wholewheat flour
  • 50g barley flour
  • 50g rye flour
  • 1/2 tsp rock salt
  • pinch chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 120 ml water
  1. Mix all ingredients to a smooth dough.
  2. Leave to rest for 20 mins
  3. Knead well (this usually takes a good ten mins if doing by hand) and divide into 8 balls.
  4. Rolls each ball into a disc on a floured surface to prevent sticking.
  5. Spray a heavy frying pan with oil and heat the rotis on each side until cooked through.
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