In a dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the yellow onion, salt, pepper, garlic and ginger. Saute, stirring, until the onions are tender, about 4 minutes.
Add the paprika, curry powder, cayenne, cinnamon, cumin, turmeric and tomato paste. Toast spices, stirring, until very fragrant, about 2 minutes.
Add the lentils and stir to incorporate. Once incorporated, add the broth and bay leaf and stir to combine.
Bring lentils to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until lentils are almost tender, about 20 minutes. They should still have a little bit of a bite to them at this time.
Add the coconut milk and stir to combine. Cook, uncovered and stirring often, until the lentils are tender, but not mushy, 5 to 10 more minutes. Once the lentils are tender, stir in the fresh lemon juice. Taste, and add salt to taste.
Top with fresh cilantro. Serve however you please and enjoy!