Mejadra – Quick dinner idea

Mejadra – Quick dinner idea

Mejadra is a tasty quick one-pot spiced lentil and rice recipe that is ready in 30 minutes. I have taken inspiration from the recipe from Ottolenghi's Jerusalem cookbook.
I swapped out the onions for leaks as that's what I had on hand at the time and have included spices that I had readily available too. A delicately spiced, comforting meal perfect for any vegetarian or vegan friends. This recipe serves 4 or you could serve this as a side for any meat lovers. I love serving this with a leafed salad topped with my oven-roasted carrots, sliced cucumber, crumbled feta cheese and a sprinkling of pistachio nuts or pumpkin seeds.


  • 400g sliced leeks or sliced onion fried
  • 400g can of green or brown lentils (rinsed and drained)
  • 1-2 tbsp sunflower oil (or similar)
  • 2 tsp ground cumin powder
  • 2 tsp ground coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground all spice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 200g basmati rice
  • 350ml boiled water (increase to 450ml if using brown rice)
  • salt + pepper to taste


  1. In a large lidded fry pan, fry the sliced leeks or onions until soft in .
  2. Add all the spices and sugar and another splash of oil and fry for 2-5 mins.
  3. Add rice, boiled water and drained green or brown lentils, gently simmer for 15 mins with the lid on.
  4. Once cooked, remove the fry pan from the heat and place a clean tea towel over the fry pan and place the lid back on and let this steam for an extra 10 mins.
  5. Serve with a salad or meat if preferred.