(a South Indian Sambar style Dal – what you might enjoy in a thali platter)
The first time served dal in our guest house in India, the cook told me that dal and rice were a typical lunch on the subcontinent. Right on the spot, I knew I was in heaven
8 oz. split red lentils (1/2 package)
1 T. ground turmeric
½ choppd cauliflower
2 chopped carrots
1 diced and seeded jalapeno (or chili) pepper
Optional: 2 chopped stalks of celery
1 chopped onion
1 T. canola oil
1 T. black mustard seed
2 chopped tomatoes
1 tsp. ground ginger root
2 T. Sambar Masala (we use Badshah brand, available at Indian grocery stores)
½ tsp. (or to taste) Salt
1 T. (or to taste) lemon juice
Rinse lentils and sort through to remove any stones, etc.
In a deep saucepan, place lentils, 1 T. Turmeric, and 4 cups water – Bring to boil.
Boil until soft – about 20 mins. Stir occasionally. At this point you may wish to whir the dal with a hand blender for a minute or two.
Add chopped cauliflower, chopped carrot, diced jalapeno pepper and the optional chopped celery and simmer until soft.
Meanwhile, chop the onion and set aside.
Heat canola oil in fry pan with black mustard seed on high heat. Fry until you hear the seeds start popping. PAY ATTENTION AND DO NOT BURN.
Immediately turn the heat down to medium.
Add the chopped onion to the oil mix with 1 tsp. ground ginger root, 2 T. Sambar Masala and stir for one minute.
Add the chopped tomatoes to the fry pan and stir for another minute.
Add the mixture that’s in the fry pan to the DAL. Season to taste with salt and lemon juice.
Serve in a small bowl and offer gratitude to the angels while scooping some on a chapatti or pappadum.