This is an ultra simple and extremely economical recipe. I made it with split peas but you could use orange or green lentils instead. Vegetarians, vegans and meat eaters will all love it (omit the splodge of yogurt for vegans). I made this as a dish that would serve 5 as my contribution to supper with some friends to celebrate the easing of lockdown but if you are making for two or three, just halve the ingredients. You don’t have to soak the split peas first but it cuts down the cooking time if you do. To keep it simple I measured all the ingredients in a 500 ml jug

Serves 5-6

Yellow split peas measured to the 300ml level in a jug

1 leek

Oil for frying

5cm knob of peeled grated ginger

4 garlic cloves

1 mild red chili, finely chopped, seeds discarded

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

1 teaspoon mild curry powder

½ teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

100 ml coconut cream plus 200 ml of water (or 300 ml coconut milk)

400g tin of chopped tomatoes

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Bunch of fresh coriander, roughly chopped

1 dessertspoon of plain yoghourt

Cover the split peas with water to the top of the measuring jug and leave them to soak for a few hours if you have time (see note above). Rinse the peas and discard the water.

Chop the washed leek into fine rounds and let it soften and colour slightly in some oil at moderate heat. Add the grated ginger, finely chopped garlic and finely chopped deseeded red chili. Let these cook for 2 minutes then add all the spices turning them well to coat them, cooking for another minute. Add water to the coconut cream to bring it to the 300ml level and pour this into the pan along with the tin of chopped tomatoes. Add the drained split peas and bring everything to the boil. Reduce the heat immediately, put on a tight fitting lid and let it all simmer until the peas have softened (about 40 minutes). Add the salt and stir well. Sprinkle half the chopped fresh coriander into the curry and reserve the rest for garnish. Bring it to the table with a dollop of plain yoghourt and serve with rice or flatbreads.