Source: Vegetarian Fast Food by Rose Elliot
1 TBL good oil (olive, coconut)
1 medium onion, diced
1 tsp ground cardamom (original recipe calls for 8 green cardamom pods)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp chipotle powder (original receipe said a pinch of chillie powder, boring!)
1 bay leaf
1 cup of red lentils (red is best, but green/brown will also work)
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a large saucepan, then add the onion, cover and cook gently for 5-7 minutes.
Meanwhile, if using green cardamom pods, bruise the cardamom pods in a pestle and mortar or with a wooden spoon. Add them (or the cardamom powder) to the onion, along with the garlic, turmeric, chili powder and bay leaf, and cook over a gentle heat for a further 2-3 minutes.
Stir in the lentils, then pour in 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil and simmer, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes, until the lentils are very tender and pale colored.
Sharpen the flavor with lemon juice to taste, season with salt and pepper and then serve, accompanied by poppadums if you like.