Home Page

Mr Moore's inCredible Curry! (Y5)

Mr Moore's inCredible Curry!


In Y5, Mr Moore has taught his class to make a dhal. This is a plant-based curry that is cooked on the hob and is ready in about 20-30 minutes. It is gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan, low cost in terms of both ingredients and energy requirements, and made of staple ingredients from the store cupboard. It is high in fibre and protein, low in fat and can be easily adapted for alternative or additional ingredients.


The skills that Y5 have used included basic hygiene and food safety, chopping and peeling and using the hob (with supervision). They have also evaluated a range of ingredients using sensory vocabulary (it not just "nice" or "disgusting" but "sweet", "sour", "spicy" etc). They have innovated the basic initial recipe to design and then make their own sensational curries.


This unit links to Y5's Rule Britannia theme this term (curry is now one of the nation's favourite foods and sits proudly under the title of Great British Food).




Don't be put off by the long list of spices - these can be replaced by extra teaspoons of garam masala ( a blend of spices intended for a curry) which can be bought quite cheaply from all supermarkets and kept for next time.


You can add extra ingredients (like chicken, prawns or vegetables - peppers, carrots, courgettes, broccoli, sweetcorn, potatoes...). Just cook them lightly through and then add them to the pan towards the end. Ideal for any meat left over from another meal, such as a roast. 


Dhal is freezable so make a big batch and freeze other portions. Just cool to room temperature before freezing. Then defrost thoroughly and reheat in a microwave or on the stove top, making sure its piping hot. 





  • 1 teaspoon olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 2 onions – chopped and diced
  • 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger peeled and grated
  • ½ finely chopped chilli (or dried chilli flakes)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon coriander seeds
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala (see note below)
  • 200g (1 cup) dried red lentils uncooked (rinse them under water and drain)
  • 1 can (14oz/400ml) coconut milk
  • 500ml (2 cups) vegetable broth/stock
  • Salt and pepper
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 2 handfuls fresh spinach washed and drained


Note: If you don’t have all the individual spices, use 3 teaspoons garam masala powder (less than £1 for a small jar in the supermarket with plenty left over for the next time you make this delicious meal).



  1. Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook gently for 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and red chilli and cook for a few minutes.
  2. Grind the cumin, coriander and mustard seeds lightly in a pestle and mortar, then add to the pan, along with the turmeric and garam masala and cook for 1 minutes.
  3. Add the lentils, tomatoes with their juice, coconut milk and broth/stock, then stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper and cook on a medium/low heat for 15-20 minutes until reduced and thick.  If you have time, you can leave the dhal for a little longer on a very low heat for even more flavour (just stir it often and check it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan). Taste and add more chilli if desired.
  4. Just before serving, add the spinach and lemon juice. Stir to wilt the spinach in the heat of the pan.
  5. Serve with boiled rice (cook efficiently in the microwave) and/or naan bread.