A tasty and satisfying dal made with brown lentils
Course: Main Course
Keyword: lentils, Vegan
Author: Sara Lake
4cupssoft cooked or canned lentils
1cupsoft cooked or canned red kidney beans
2cupstomato puree / passata
2mediumonionsor one large
2 tbspcoconut oil
2tbspoilI used olive oil
1tbspfinely grated fresh ginger
1tspred chilli powderadjust to preference
1/2tsppowdered or crushed fenugreek seeds
Making the Masala
In a large, heavy bottomed pot heat the oil and coconut oil and saute the onions on a moderate to high heat until golden and starting to become transparent.
Add the ginger and garlic and saute for about a minute.
Add the tomato puree and all spices. Continue to saute, stirring frequently until the masala begins to thicken.
Add the lentils, beans and two cups of water and stir to combine. Continue on a moderately high head up until it starts to bubble then turn the temperature down to the lowest setting where you see the occasional bubble.
Continue to cook on a low setting for at least an hour. Cooking on a low heat allows the flavours to develop and prevents burning. Stir now and then, and add half a cup of water if the dal is looking like it might be getting a bit thick. I usually add another cup of water over a 1.5 hour cook time.
Your final result should be smooth and creamy. Taste and add more salt if necessary.
Serve with a swirl of coconut yogurt and a sprinkle of fresh coriander. Basmati rice or garlic naan make a lovely addition to round out the meal.
Tips!Your lentils need to be mooshy and very soft. Don't try and make this dal with undercooked lentils as it just won't work at all.It is possible to replace the oils with butter and ghee, and use regular yogurt if you do not require a vegan meal.It is worth expending a little on the more expensive spices if you can. In New Zealand I use the Spice Trader brand, but often little Indian grocery stores have spices that perform better than anything you can get in the supermarket.