Seasalt Nourish, Healthy Soul Food: Warming Dahl

We’ve enlisted Seasalt friend Tia Tamblyn of Botelet Farm to inspire us with deliciously comforting recipes.

Tia wears our Landing Top and Pebble Drop Skirt. Photos by Richard Tamblyn

We’re handing over to Tia to talk us through this versatile bowlful.

“This hearty dahl is a perfect warming meal. Using locally grown onion, garlic, leeks cauliflower, coriander and lemons it celebrates the seasonal veg available during the sparser growing season here in Cornwall. You can swap in alternative vegetables depending upon what you have available locally, and in the store cupboard to use up.

I always like to batch-cook dahl and keep it going in various iterations over two or three days as the flavours continue to develop – with rice, as a pasta topping or with naan.”

Tia Wears our Sailor Shirt and Studio Apron. Photos by Richard Tamblyn

Serves: 8 – 10

Prep time: 25 mins

Cook time: 35 minutes


  • 1 cauliflower
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 1 tsp za’atar (or replace with a blend of thyme, oregano and marjoram)
  • Rapeseed (or alternative) oil
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 leek
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 chilli
  • Nub of fresh ginger
  • 400g red lentils
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tin coconut milk
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • Handful fresh coriander
  • Cornish Sea Salt & cracked pepper


  • Warm oven to 180°C.
  • Begin by preparing the cauliflower, which is roasted separately then added to the dahl just before serving. Cut the florets into bite-size pieces and spread out on a baking tray. Drizzle with oil, season with za’atar, salt and pepper and grate over the zest of one lemon. Mix together to combine the seasonings then place in the oven for 20 minutes removing the pan half-way through and giving it a good shake. When cooked remove from oven and set aside.
  • While the cauliflower is cooking, chop the onion and leek (including leaves) into small pieces.
  • In a large saucepan place 2 tbsp oil and warm over a medium heat. Add the mustard and cumin seeds, warm them until they start to sizzle then add the onion and leek. Cook for 5 minutes until starting to soften, stirring regularly.
  • While the onion and leek are cooking finely chop the garlic, ginger and chilli.
  • Stir the turmeric and ground coriander into the pan. Leave to cook for a minute then add the garlic, chilli and ginger. Cook for a couple of minutes stirring regularly.
  • Stir through the lentils then add the can of tomatoes, stock cube, can of coconut milk and stir well.
  • Boil a kettle and fill the tomato and coconut milk tins to the top with boiled water, washing them out as you add the boiled water into the saucepan. Add a further ½ a tin of boiled water to the saucepan, stir well, season with salt and pepper.
  • Bring to the boil then turn the heat down and simmer for approximately 20 minutes, stirring regularly and adding a little extra water if needed.
  • While the dahl is cooking, juice the lemon and chop the fresh coriander, including stalks.
  • After approx. 20 minutes the dahl should have thickened and the lentils softened. Taste, adjust seasoning if needed. Pour the roasted cauliflower into the dahl, add the lemon juice and half of the fresh coriander and stir through gently then remove from heat.
  • Serve with a drizzle of olive oil, the remaining fresh coriander and cracked pepper on top.

Serving suggestion – with brown basmati rice.

Photos by Richard Tamblyn

Tia’s fresh produce was supplied by Real Food Garden and Fruutbox . She also used Also used Cornish Sea Salt and Cornish rapeseed oil. Why not explore what’s available from your own local suppliers? Recipes created at Botelet Farm. Photos by Richard Tamblyn.

We’d love to see your variations on this and other recipes in our Seasalt Nourish series. Share using #seasaltnourish.