Red Lentil Dal

dal

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 40 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 3 tomatoes
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped and made into a paste*
  • 2 teaspoons of Bengali five spice mix or 1/2 tsp black (or white) sesame seeds, 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, 1/2 tsp fennel seeds, 1/2 tsp mustard seeds, and (if available) 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro de-stemmed and chopped
  • Cooked brown rice, optional

 

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1 Place 1 cup of red lentils in a metal sieve. Rinse well with cold water. Pour cleaned lentils into a medium sauce pan. Add 3 cups of water. Bring lentils and water to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until the lentils are soft.

2 While the lentils are cooking in step 1, bring a separate small pot of water to a boil. Score the peel of the tomatoes with a sharp knife in the shape of an “X”. Place the tomatoes in the boiling water and blanch for one minute. Remove the tomatoes to a bowl to cool. Once cool, peel the tomatoes and cut out and discard the tough stem end. Chop the tomatoes, or mash them, and set aside.

3 After the lentils in step 1 have cooked at least 5 minutes, start preparing the onions and spices. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onions. Cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add garlic paste and cook for 1 minute more, stirring continuously, making sure that the garlic does not burn. Add the Bengali five spice. Cook and stir for another 2-3 minutes. Add bay leaf and turmeric. Stir.

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4 To the onions and spices, add the cooked lentils along with the lentil cooking water. Add salt. Cook for 10 minutes. Add lime juice and tomatoes. Cook for 3-5 more minutes. Adjust salt if necessary. Stir in chopped cilantro and remove from heat. Garnish with more chopped cilantro.

Serve with basmati rice or naan bread.

Yield: Serves 4.

 

 

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