Food 52’s Healthiest: Curried Lentil Dip

Every Tuesday, we scan Food52′s delectable menu of recipes for the healthiest picks they’ve got—bringing you seasonal, scrumptious fare that’s also really good for you.

Every Tuesday, we scan Food52′s delectable menu of recipes for the healthiest picks they’ve got—bringing you seasonal, scrumptious fare that’s also really good for you. 

Dips are usually full of fat and unnecessary calories, but this legume-and-veggie recipe is an exception. Lentils are stocked with dietary fiber and important minerals like iron, potassium, and phosphorous. Coconut milk packs protein, and healthy spices like turmeric round out the recipe.

(Photo credit: Sarah Shatz for

Curried Lentil Dip
Serves 6 to 8

1 can of Coconut Milk
1 1/2 cup dried red lentils (rinsed)
1 Onion, large, minced
1 tablespoon Garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 1/2 cup Chicken Stock
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1/2 teaspoon each ground cumin, turmeric, cumin, and black pepper
2 teaspoons Garam Masala Curry Powder
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2-3 Bay Leaves
3 tablespoons Cilantro (fresh), chopped
Sweet Potato Chips (optional)

1. Place can of coconut milk in freezer 20 minutes before starting to cook. Open can and remove solidified coconut butter from the top to use in sautéing. Reserve the rest of the coconut milk.

2. In a sieve rinse lentils and drain.

3. In a 2-quart heavy saucepan cook onion, garlic, and a couple pinches of salt in 2 tablespoons coconut milk fat over moderate heat, stirring, until golden.

4. Add ginger and cook, stirring, 1 minute.

5. Add lentils, coconut milk, chicken stock and 1 1/2 cups water and gently boil, uncovered, until lentils fall apart, about 20 minutes.

6. While lentils are cooking, take a small heavy skillet and heat the olive oil over moderate heat until hot but not smoking and cook cumin, stirring, until a shade darker, about 30 seconds.

7. Add garam masala and other remaining spices and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 15 to 30 seconds. Stir hot spice oil into lentils.

8. Let curry stand, covered, 5 minutes to allow flavors to develop. Stir in cilantro and add salt to taste.

9. Serve with either Sweet Potato Chips or as a side dish.

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