Food is considered medicine in India. The dish you make is like a magic potion and the ingredients help you balance your mind, body & soul. I have learnt to love cooking and I have some firm favourites that I fall back on when I want something simple & wholesome. As I cannot share the food, I will share the recipes with you.
Protein rich lentils
Did you know the lentils used for Dal varies regionally.
The recipe for how you cook varies regionally too.
Red lentils Dal – 2 cups
Onions (chopped) – 1 or 2
Garlic (chopped) – 3 cloves per cup of Dal or so
Turmeric – half a teaspoon
Oil to fry
Tomatoes (chopped) – 2 or 3 ripe
Cumin seeds – 1 tablespoon
Star Anise – 2
Bay leaves – 2
Cloves – 4
Cardamom – 2
Dried red chillies or fresh green chillies – 2 (if you want heat)
Salt as per taste
These ingredients are optional and use what you have. Adjust as per your taste.
Step by step instructions:
- Soak the lentils in warm water for at least 15 minutes before cooking.
- While it’s soaking, gently fry the cumin, star anise, bay leaves & cloves in a deep pan with oil.
- When it’s slightly brown, add in the onions and garlic.
- Fry till the smell makes you hungry and the onions turn brown.
- Add the red chillies or green chillies and keep frying for a minute longer.
- If you have tomatoes, add them in now. Fry till it goes a bit soft.
- Add in the soaked lentils into the pan.
- Add water. The water is generally double the quantity of lentils plus a little bit more.
- Add the turmeric and salt to taste.
- Let it cook.
- If you have a pressure cooker, then cook it all together.
- Cook till the lentils are soft and mushy. Its mushy when you can’t see the individual lentil grains
Serve with rice or with chapati. Let me know how you get on, if you do try it.