Turkish Lentils with Cauliflower Steaks


This is a very healthy lentil recipe that’s easy to make.  It’s a delicious, satisfying and – despite its simplicity – deep and complex in flavor from the variety of spices. The dish can easily be made vegetarian by replacing the chicken broth with vegetable stock or water or vegan by replacing the stock and omitting the yogurt.



  • 3/4 to 1 cup brown lentils
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • ½ tsp Coriander seeds
  • ½ tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, or two cups fresh tomatoes
  • 1 medium zucchini
  • Olive oil, salt, pepper
  • Plain yogurt for serving


  1. Soak lentils in water for several hours or overnight.
  2. Chop up 1 large onion and fry till dark brown in 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  3. Add chicken broth or 3 chicken bouillon cubes with two cups of boiling water
  4. Add 1 tsp salt, ½ tsp pepper, ½ tsp coriander seeds (crush seeds or substitute ground coriander), ½ tsp yellow mustard seeds, 3 minced garlic cloves, ¾ cup lentils
  5. Also add a can of diced tomatoes or two cups of fresh tomatoes
  6. Cook 1.5 hours until lentils are nearly tender, then add a medium zucchini, cut up into half-moons and cook an additional half hour.
  7. Season with salt & pepper and serve with a dollop of plain yogurt, and garnish with cilantro if desired.

Notes: You can use green (french) lentils, you don’t need to soak them at all, and don’t need to cook them as long.  Also, you can replace the chicken broth with vegetable stock or water to make this a vegetarian dish, or replace the broth and omit the yogurt to make it vegan.  You can also add ½ tsp ground cumin when you add the other spices.



  • 1 Cauliflower
  • 3 cloves Garlic, peeled and sliced
  • Olive oil, salt


  1. Preheat oven to 450, and preheat a baking pan
  2. Carefully take the core out of the cauliflower, so the head remains more or less in tact.
  3. Place the cauliflower core-side-down on a cutting board and cut into 1-inch thick ‘steaks’
  4. Lay the cauliflower steaks flat and coat generously with olive oil and salt on both sides.
  5. When the oven is preheated, add the cauliflowers steaks to then pan with the garlic.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.

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