"On Thursday we don't eat meat".  A phrase that I grew up with and which has stuck with me ever since.  Thursdays in Sudan were vegetarian days for many families, in preparation for the meat and fish that they would eat the next day, on Friday night for Shabbat.  This vegetarian dish is eaten with yoghurt and is incredibly filling!  

Serves 6

3 cloves garlic
1 tsp. turmeric
2 tsp. ground cumin
100g butter
1 tsp. salt
200g basmati rice
300g red lentils
700ml water


  • Mince the garlic

  • Wash the lentils and rice together in a sieve under a tap until the water running through it is clear

  • Fry the garlic in butter until golden. Add the cumin and the turmeric, then fry for another 30 seconds

  • Add the lentils, rice and salt.

  • Form a hole in the centre of the pan and pour the water into it

  • Bring to the boil for about 1 minute, then lower to a medium-low heat, cover and cook for about half an hour until the rice is cooked and the water has fully absorbed into it

  • If the water has absorbed before the rice is fully cooked, add a little more

Yoghurt Topping
500g Greek yoghurt (or 300g sour cream and 120g buttermilk) 
1 cucumber, finely chopped
2 tsps. dried mint
1 tblsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. salt