Palak Daal (Chickpeas with Spinach- SRC)

October 16, 2016 at 10:00 pm 8 comments

It snowed this week…yep, our first snow of the year already arrived! Growing up in a warmer Texas climate, the quick change of seasons in Montana never fails to catch me off guard🙂 As the temperature drops, I find myself in the mood for more comfort meals as I warm up to the idea that winter is starting to dig in it’s heels for the long haul. Lentils and chickpeas are comfort foods in my book…not only do they have a creamy texture, they’re hearty and filling and can accompany a warm pita or can be used in skillet meals, breakfast dishes and even dessert. This dish for chickpeas and spinach served over cozy rice hit the spot!
Another idea I am still warming up to is this post is the second to last for the Secret Recipe Club monthly reveals. Sadly, we got the news this month that the club is coming to an end after 5 years… and I have so enjoyed my 4+ years in the club, I can’t believe it’s been that long! For this month, I was assigned The Big Sweet Tooth blog, and what fun I had searching through recipes and getting to know her Rafeeda! Her blog has a huge variety of recipes, with an extensive collection of Indian dishes. Amongst the many that piqued my interest are her Ripe Plantain Lentil Sweet Curry (the combination of ingredients plus the sweet and savory aspect are intriguing), her South Indian Rice Cakes (these are naturally gluten free and fermented!), and her Egg-free Mango Chocolate Marble Cake (this is a perfect fall-looking cake).
In the end, I chose Rafeeda’s Palak Daal (Spinach Lentil Gravy) recipe when I craving greens and beans, AND I had many ingredients on hand.  If you enjoy curries and pulses (chickpeas/lentils etc), this is a definite keeper! I made a few adjustments based on the availability of ingredients: I used serrano peppers for the green chilis, swapped minced a garlic clove and 1/2 inch of fresh ginger instead of a ginger garlic paste and used chickpeas (chana dal) instead of red lentils as Rafeeda suggested. I also drizzled some lemon juice over the dish for acidity before serving since I love that extra little zing but feel free to omit if you prefer🙂
Palak Daak (Chickpeas or Lentils with Spinach) lightly adapted from The Big Sweet Tooth
Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free, Vegan, Vegetarian, Nut-free, Soy-free, Sugar-free, Egg-free

¾ cup masoor lentil (can use chickpeas, red lentils)*
¼ tsp turmeric powder
sea salt to taste (I used 2 tsp)
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp mustard seeds
2 serrano peppers, deseeded and minced (or 2 green chilies)
1 tsp ginger garlic paste (I used 1 garlic clove and 1/2 tsp freshly minced ginger)
1 onion, minced
1 bunch spinach, chopped thinly
¼ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp red chilli powder (I found Kashmiri chili powder in the bulk section of our health food store)**
½ tsp garam masala powder
1 tsp fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi)
Sea salt to taste
a drizzle of fresh lemon juice, lime juice or apple cider vinegar (I used roughly 2 tbsp)

  1. Pressure cook the lentils/chickpeas in sufficient water with turmeric and salt. (I’m not that familiar with pressure cooking though I own one so I followed these instructions for cooking but used 3/4 cup chickpeas and the tumeric and salt in the recipe above).
  2. In a saucepan, heat coconut oil over medium-high heat. Crackle the cumin and mustard seeds.
  3. Add the serrano/green chillies and ginger garlic paste and saute until you smell a nice aroma.
  4. Add the onions and saute until wilted, then sprinkle with  little salt.
  5. Add in the spinach and masala powders (tumeric through garam masala) and saute till the spinach looks wilted.
  6. Add the cooked chickpeas/lentils into the sauteed masala, cover and simmer for five minutes.
  7. Add the fenugreek leaves and lemon/lime juice or apple cider vinegar and give a final mix. Taste and season with additional salt if desired.
  8. Serve warm with rice or rotis.
*You can use any daal of your choice instead of chana dal (chickpeas) – masoor dal (red lentils)  and moong daal (split green gram) 🙂
** If you cannot find the Kashmiri chili powder, you can substitute a mixture of paprika and cayenne pepper – about 3 parts paprika to 1 part cayenne pepper.
For other recipes from this month’s reveal, click the link below!

Entry filed under: Gluten Free, Lunch, Main Dish, Refined Sugar Free, Vegan, Vegetarian. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , .

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8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. annelawton  |  October 17, 2016 at 8:35 am

    This sounds so good. I love chick peas!

  • 2. Sarah  |  October 17, 2016 at 8:48 am

    it was so fun to have your blog this month! thanks for a great pizza recipe.🙂

  • 3. adina  |  October 17, 2016 at 8:55 am

    My kind of comfort food as well, I love anything made with chickpeas and nothing beats Indian food… So sad about SRC coming to an end. I will miss it!

    • 4. naturalnoshing  |  October 17, 2016 at 9:21 am

      Completely agree!🙂 Yes, Im going to miss it too!!

  • 5. teaandscones  |  October 17, 2016 at 3:11 pm

    I have only just learned to cook and like chickpeas. This looks tasty.

  • 6. Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook  |  October 17, 2016 at 4:38 pm

    My husband loves chickpeas and this looks like a recipe he will love! Thanks for sharing – great pick for SRC. I will miss the SRC too but we still have one more time to share!🙂

  • 7. Rafeeda - The Big Sweet Tooth  |  October 17, 2016 at 11:37 pm

    I am excited you got to explore my little blog…🙂 I love my lentils and beans though there are normally no takers at home, still I force it down their throat… Your curry looks great… A little clarification for you – chickpeas are called “chana” and chick pea lentil, which look like any other lentil but is thick and yellow in color, is called “chana dal”🙂

  • 8. Heather  |  October 18, 2016 at 6:31 am

    This looks really good! Great SRC recipe!


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