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This was quite spicy. I used a dash cayenne pepper instead of a hot pepper and just added it along with the other spices. I think this recipe could be five stars with a couple changes. Using olive oil as called for, sadly I had to use canola oil!! Adding only a pinch cayenne pepper if any for our tastes. I did chop the stewed tomatoes and recommend that but I suggest using less it was very tomatoey. I think the sea salt added with the spices may be the reason my lentils had trouble softening as I read someone on Zaar wrote she thinks salt should be added last to let pulses cook properly. Made for April 2010 FLAVOR of the Month - Tamarind!