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Savoury Rhubarb and Cinnamon Red Lentil Curry

This savoury rhubarb recipe is proof that rhubarb doesn’t have to be reserved just for dessert. This tangy and spicy quick curry is delicious and it owes its flavour to the magnificent sticks of red!

Savoury rhubarb curry

Whilst I do love a good rhubarb dessert, rhubarb deserves more than just being caked in sugar and boiled into insignificance. I now use rhubarb in lots of savoury dishes. It adds a wonderfully tangy heat to any dish. It’s perfect for this smooth and sumptuous curry recipe.

When to eat

We recommend eating this dish from February through to June. Forced rhubarb (grown in the dark) appears at the beginning of the year and is tender and tart. In April field grown varieties start to appear which are less tender but more flavoursome.

Savoury Rhubarb and Cinnamon Red Lentil Curry

Although Rhubarb is a vegetable, the majority of its uses in cooking are reserved to deserts. It's tangy and crisp flavour pair well with sugar, lending itself well to being used in pies and crumbles. However, rhubarb can be excellent in savoury dishes as well as I attempt to show in this wonderfully simple and light curry.
4.55 from 140 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Course Main Course

This meal is around 91% less polluting than the average UK meal.

Eating this recipe will save around 2.69 KG CO2e per person.

That’s equivalent to the emissions produced driving 22.20 KM in a modern car.

How do I calculate this?

Ingredients

  • 200 g Rhubarb (very finely sliced)
  • 2 Large Onions (finely diced)
  • 4 Cloves Garlic (finely diced)
  • 2 Teaspoons Caster Sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons Cinnamon
  • 2 Tablespoons Garam Masala
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper (or generic chilli powder)
  • 750 ml Vegetable Stock
  • 300 g Split Red Lentils
  • 150 g Spinach
  • 30 g Fresh Coriander (roughly chopped)
  • 1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil

Instructions

  • Heat the tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large saucepan over a medium-high heat. Pour in the chopped onions and garlic. Fry for about 2-3 minutes until the onions are nice and soft.
  • Add the 200g of sliced rhubarb into the frying pan along with the 2 tablespoons of garam masala, 2 teaspoons of cinnamon, 2 teaspoons of caster sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper. Cook for around a minute, stirring well to combine.
  • Tip in the 300g red lentils and 750ml of vegetable stock. Bring the pan to the boil, then turn down to a simmer, cover and cook for around 13 – 15 minutes until the lentils are cooked and the stock has reduced to a thick sauce.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and season to taste. Then stir in the 150g spinach and 30g chopped coriander. Stir the spinach and coriander until they have wilted sufficiently.
  • Serve the curry immediately. I recommend eating it with fluffy pilau rice or a fresh naan. Alternatively it can be eaten on its own as a semi-dhal. Enjoy!

Hi i'm Hugo

I started Lowly to help more people discover sustainable food. Planet-friendly food doesn’t have to be bland and boring. My recipes celebrate how diverse and flavourful it truly is.

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13 Comments

Lise

April 26, 2022 at 11:54 am

Amazing recipe! Thank you. It’s great to find something that uses current crops. I think I can add a bit more rhubarb to the recipe and it’d still be fab!

    hugo

    April 27, 2022 at 9:11 pm

    Lovely to hear Lise, I’m all about using current crops!

Jan

May 20, 2022 at 6:32 pm

Love your site! So many great recipes! Just need help with conversions from metric to Imperial system measurements. It would be nice to have those in parentheses!

    hugo

    May 21, 2022 at 12:57 pm

    Hi Jan, thanks for your kind words. Yes I need to add in the unit conversions, I just haven’t had time yet. Hopefully I’ll get round to it soon!

Rabarbara

May 21, 2022 at 12:52 pm

No salt?

    hugo

    May 21, 2022 at 12:56 pm

    Hi Rabarbara, I recommend seasoning to taste after the lentils have cooked (see step 4). I personally use about 1 teaspoon of good quality sea salt.

Rabarbara

May 21, 2022 at 1:32 pm

I just tried this, but I prepared it in my own way (without onion and garlic). The combination of rhubarb, spinach, lentils (I used split yellow ones), cinnamon and garam masala is a good find. And it was done in an instant! I ate it as a standalone in between soup, and that was very fine.

Thank you for sharing!

Laura

May 24, 2022 at 5:27 pm

Awesome! I wanted to try something with rhubarb that wasn’t sweet. This recipe is amazing! I served it over a small portion of white rice.

    hugo

    June 24, 2022 at 11:22 am

    Great news Laura!

Evelyn

June 24, 2022 at 11:12 am

Hello Hugo,
I’ve just accidentally come across your web page while I was searching for a recipe to make with Rhubarb.
I have never thought of cooking Rhubarb as a savoury main dish and have my eye on the recipe you have on here called Savoury Rhubarb and cinnamon red lentil curry. It looks really inspiring and I’m looking forward to giving it a go! It’s also so very enlightening and educating to read and learn about the carbon footprint this recipe has.
Thank you for all this new information. I look forward to reading more on here.

    hugo

    June 24, 2022 at 11:23 am

    No problem Evelyn, glad you’re enjoying the site. I hope you kike the curry!!

T

June 25, 2022 at 5:14 pm

Fantastic recipe!
Absolutely delicious and amazing to use rhubarb in a savoury way!
Thank you!

    hugo

    June 27, 2022 at 9:34 am

    Glad to hear it!