This national dish of Egypt, koshari, is served everywhere, from roadside stalls to up-market restaurants. It is a deliciously comforting spicy dish and is a great vegan meal option.
3 tbsp butter, or extra-virgin olive oil
1/2cup vermicelli pasta, broken into 4cm pieces
1 cup puy lentils
1 cup basmati rice
400g can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
3 1/2 cups chicken stock, vegetable stock, or water
finely grated zest of 1/2 a lemon
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup chopped coriander, plus extra leaves to garnish
SPICY TOMATO SAUCE
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
1 tbsp ground cumin
a pinch of chilli flakes
2 x 400g cans crushed tomatoes
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 onions, halved and thinly sliced
SPICY TOMATO SAUCE
To make the Spicy Tomato Sauce, heat oil in a frypan, add garlic, ginger, cumin and chilli and fry gently for 1-2 minutes.
Add tomatoes, sugar, vinegar and salt and simmer until lightly thickened (10-15 minutes).
While the sauce is cooking, heat butter or oil in a pot with a close-fitting lid, add vermicelli or rissoni and cook for 1-2 minutes until lightly browned
Add lentils, rice, chickpeas, stock, lemon zest, cinnamon, allspice, salt and pepper.
Stir, bring to a simmer, cover and cook until liquid has fully absorbed and pasta, lentils and rice are tender (30 minutes).
While the lentil mixture is cooking, make Crispy Onions by heating oil in a frypan, adding onions and frying until golden and crispy (15 minutes).
Drain onions on paper towels and set aside.
To serve, tip the lentil mixture into a serving bowl and mix in coriander leaves.
Taste Spicy Tomato Sauce and adjust seasonings.
Spoon sauce on top of lentils and scatter with crispy onions and extra coriander.