250g/9oz chana dal (yellow dried split peas), rinsed until the water runs clear
1 litre/1¾ pints water
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 small onion, chopped
3-4 whole green chillies, pricked with a knife
2cm/¾in piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into thin strips
3 garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
¾ tsp ground turmeric
¾ tsp garam masala
1½ tsp ground coriander
salt and freshly ground black pepper
handful chopped fresh coriander leaves
Treat as two dishes,
A) The Dal.
Soak Dal in fresh water for a while( depends on the dal, an hour is plenty)then rinse in a sieve till the water runs CLEAR.
Chuck the lentils in exact quantity of water in recipe as above and bring to oil. Cook til done. As the lentils cook, they we produce a froth, skim this off, not needed. Looks a little scummy tbh, not nice.
Once cooked, take a hand whisk and give it a whisk for a few mins, low stress, you are just trying to break it up a little.
Put aside and to cool somewhat, it will thicken all on its own.
B) the Tarka (not really but just the way I think of this as 2 seperate things that easily come together at the end)
1.Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and fry for 20-30 seconds, or until fragrant.
2.Add the onion, chillies and ginger and fry for 4-5 minutes, or until golden-brown.
3.Blend the garlic and tomatoes to a purée in a food processor. Add the purée to the pan and stir well to combine.
4.Add the ground spices and 100ml/3½fl oz of water to the pan and stir well to combine. Season, to taste, with salt and simmer over a medium heat for 15-20 minutes, or until the oil from the sauce has risen to the surface of the sauce.
5.Add the cooked lentils to the sauce and stir well, adding more water as necessary to loosen the mixture. Bring the mixture to the boil and season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir in the chopped coriander just before serving
I basically cut and pasted the points above because there really isn't any trick, just a delicious Dal.
The thing I have recently been doing is to Roast ANY veggies I like. Little bit of oil, a sprinkle of Garam Masala, salt/pepper. Put these awesome roasties in a Tupperware dish in fridge and basically add them to my Tarka Dal with some cooked chicken.
Simple easy and relatively healthy. Low GI an all that jazz too.
Because i am