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Vegetable biryani, with lentils (v)

Biryani adapted from this recipe at Taste.com.au

Naturally vegan

Serves 6 when served together; the biryani alone could serve 4

Original post (with pictures) here

For the biryani


1 cup basmati rice

3 cups water, divided

1 vegetable stock cube

1 tsp olive oil

1 brown onion, diced

1 garlic clove, finely diced

1 1/2 tsp garam masala

1/2 tsp tumeric

1/2 large or 1 small eggplant, chopped

1/2 head cauliflower, chopped into florets

1/4 zucchini, chopped (optional; I added this because I was using zucchini with the lentils)

1 stick celery, finely sliced

1/4 cup currants

2 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped, plus extra to serve


1. Heat 1 1/2 cups of the water and the stock cube in a medium saucepan. Add the basmati rice, bring to the boil, and then reduce to simmer, covered, for ~12 minutes.

2. Whilst the rice is cooking, heat the oil in a large non-stick pan and saute the onion and garlic over medium to high heat until golden. Reduce the heat and add the eggplant, garam masala and tumeric. Stir; cook for ~2 minutes.

3. Add the cauliflower, zucchini and celery and 1/2 cup of the remaining water to the non-stick pan. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally.

4. When the rice is just cooked, add it to the non-stick pan, along with the remaining 1 cup of water.

5. Add the currants and coriander and stir to combine. Leave over low heat for a further 5 minutes. 

6. Turn off the heat and cover with a tea towel (or a lid, if your pan has one) for a further 5 - 10 minutes. Re-heat before serving and serve with extra coriander.

For the lentils


1 tin lentils (or dried lentils, soaked and cooked in advance)

1 tin crushed tomato

~2 cups vegetables of choice, diced (on this occasion, I used 3/4 zucchini and 1/2 large eggplant)

1 tsp garam masala

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp tumeric

~1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped


1. Heat the lentils and tomato in a medium saucepan over medium to high heat until starting to bubble.

2. Reduce the heat to low and add the vegetables and spices. Cover. Allow to cook for at least 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, but preferably longer (to allow the flavours to develop).