Zingy split pea curry with tomatoes & apples


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This is gorgeous.  The tomatoes and apples perfectly balance the earthy flavour of yellow split peas.  Like all beans and pulses this is more digestible and cooks faster if you soak the split peas overnight in clean cold water to about twice their depth in a saucepan or bowl.    This is even better the next day and freezes really well.

For 2 people with 1 serving of leftovers

160g/1 mug yellow split peas
1/2 level tsp ground turmeric to add to the cooking water
1 tbs ghee or virgin coconut oil
1 heaped tsp cumin seeds
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 gently rounded tsp garam masala (available in Asian stores)
1/2 level tsp ground red chilli
1/2 level tsp ground turmeric
400g chopped tomatoes, ideally fresh but canned will do
160g cooking apples, peeled, cored and chopped into 1cm pieces

2 tbs chopped fresh coriander

1. If using dried split peas: Place the peas with 800ml clean water and the 1/2 tsp turmeric in a heavy-based saucepan and bring to the boil over a medium heat.  Skim off any foam.  Reduce heat to medium, cover and cook for 25 minutes until tender.
If using soaked split peas: discard the soak water, place the peas and the half teaspoon turmeric in a saucepan with enough clean water to cover by about 2cm.  Boil for a few minutes, skimming off any foam before turning down the heat to medium, cover and cook till tender for between 15 and 20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile heat the ghee or coconut oil in a heavy-based pan on a medium heat, add 1 dsp water along with the onions and cover with a lid.  Sweat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent.  If its drying out too much before the onions are done, add a little more water to keep it steam-frying rather than browning or burning.
3. Stir in the rounded tsp of garam masala, 1/2 tsp of chilli and 1/2 tsp turmeric.  Cook for a minutes, stirring and then add the tomatoes and the apple.
4. cook for about 25 minutes until most of the liquid has been absorbed, the apples are soft and the tomatoes have broken down.
5. Add the cooked split peas and simmer for a few minutes.
6. Garnish with the chopped coriander.

Serve with:
Steamed greens (e.g. broccoli, green/runner beans, cabbage, sprouts, pak choi)  plus one of the following:
Cauliflower rice (recipe on blog)
Indian spiced squash (recipe on blog)
Brown rice or quinoa (but avoid these two if you are on the SC diet)

Why this is good for you
This has a range of  fibres that feed different categories of good gut bacteria, all of which you need to remain well.  Pectin from the cooking apples, inulin from the onions, soluble fibre from the split peas all feed good bacteria.  Cumin and garam masala have a suppressing effect on “bad” bacteria in your intestine.  I always recommend a wide variety of plant types and herbs and spices to people who want to optimise their health and avoid chronic health conditions like diabetes, heart disease and arthritis.