Daal

Bringing a touch of aromatic Indian food to your cuisine this week. Daal is made from lentils which are a great protein rich dish  – at least 3x that of rice and 2x that of wheat – so it is a great choice for vegetarians. 

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 400g mung dal (skinned yellow split mung beans)
  •  4 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
  •  4cm piece of root ginger, peeled and cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 tbs turmeric
  • 4 small green chillies, 2 finely chopped, 2 left whole
  • 2 tbsp ghee or groundnut oil
  • 4  shallots, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp crushed chilli
  • Fresh coriander, chopped to serve

 

  1. Wash the mung dal until the water runs clear,  drain and place in a large pan  and cover with 2 litres of cold water.
  2. Bring to the boil and skim off any scum that rises to the surface.
  3. Add the garlic, ginger, turmeric and chopped chillies to the pan with a pinch of salt.
  4. Turn down the heat, cover, leaving the lid slightly ajar, and simmer very gently for about 1½ hours, stirring occasionally, until the daal has broken down completely and has a creamy texture.
  5. Add boiling water as necessary to achieve consistency you prefer.
  6. Season to taste – I add about 1 tsp salt – then add the whole chillies and simmer for 15 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile, heat the ghee or oil in a frying pan over a medium high heat and add the shallots. Stir until golden and beginning to crisp.
  8. Add the dried spices and cook for a couple of minutes until the mustard seeds are beginning to pop and then stir into the daal.
  9. When ready to serve sprinkle with the chopped coriander.
  10. Serve with plain boiled or steamed rice or pitta/flatbreads.

Variations:

  • Add in cayenne pepper and garam masala to taste
  • Add in a couple of chopped tomatoes
  • Stir in some frozen spinach through at the last minute before serving.

 

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