I make Daal many times a week as it is quick and yummy. This is a great meal when my sons bring home unexpected friends. I like to invite them to eat with us especially if they have come at dinner time, in keeping with traditions from home. This with rice and a simple salad makes all happy. In most Indian homes, you will always have a bowl of Daal in addition to other dishes with most meals. Make sure you are always soaking lentils. Thinking and planning ahead is a good thing and it has now become routine for me. I soak whatever lentils we will be cooking a day before.
Preparation & Cooking Time 60 minutes – Serves 4
2 Cups of masoor daal or red lentils, *soaked
1 tsp turmeric
2 cups water
1 tsp tamarind or 1/2 lemon
Masala for frying
2 TB ghee or oil
1 tsp panch phoran
6 kari leaves
1 green chili, julienned
2 cloves garlic, diced
2 inches ginger, grated
1small purple onion, finely chopped
1 large tomato, diced
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp salt
1/4 C cilantro leaves, chopped
1 tsp ghee/ coconut oil per soup serving
Boil lentils with turmeric and 2 cups of water. Remove any foam that rises. Let it simmer for 20 minutes or until cooked. Dissolve tamarind in 1/4 C hot water and add this to the cooked lentils. Alternatively, you can squeeze the juice of a half lemon.
In a separate pan, heat ghee or coconut oil, when it is hot, turn heat to low & add the panch phoran or jeera- mori seeds. Cover and wait until the ‘popping’ stops about 30 seconds.
Add Kari leaves, green chili, ginger and garlic fry for 1 minute. Turn heat to medium high, add onions and fry for about 5 minutes. Add the tomato, garam masala and fry for about 5 minutes.
Add the cooked lentils and mix well with the fried spices. Add salt to taste. Garnish with coriander leaves sprinkled on top. Pour a teaspoon of ghee or coconut oil over each bowl daal.
For more recipes and spices, please have a look at Trudy Ann’s Masala Kitchen Recipe cookbook.
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