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Basic Dal Recipe
By : Sify Bawarchi
Category : Lentils, Uttar pradesh, Health food
Servings : 4
Time Taken : 45-60 mins
Rating :
Lentils or dal is one dish that can be eaten at any given day and time. It`s the simplicity of the dal that makes it extraordinarily comforting.

It`s easy to prepare and you could work several techniques to come up with unique results. Left over dal can act as a gravy thickener. Simmer it done completely evaporating the water and it makes for a good filling or stuffing.
Considered as a kiosk food, dal is savoured by both rich and poor and can be seen in any restaurant menu as a top pick. Dal completes the meal course for many and is an important or rather a staple in the diet. Several versions of the simple dal are available but plain and simple dal beats them all. Served with hot phulkas or parathas, the course is completed with pickle and curd.

The Pakistani style of dal is prepared with almost no oil making this nutritiously rich source of protein richer.

Lentils are high in carbohydrates but literally fat free, hence weight watchers can consume dal in regular portions.

1) Pressure cook the dal with the tomato and carrot.
2) Once soft and cooked to a mushy consistency, set aside.
3) In a heavy bottom wok add some oil and ghee and heat.
4) Add the mustard seed, jeera seeds, dry chilly asafoetida and curry leaves.
5) Once you get the aroma, add the ginger and garlic and saute.
6) Add the onions and saute till golden brown.
7) Once brown add the spice powders and mix well, While doing so turn down the heat to prevent the spices from burning.
8) Add the dal to the tempered ingredients and mix well.
9) This simple and easy to make dal is ready to be served. Garnish with chopped coriander on a bed of steamed rice with an additional swirl of ghee.

1) You could add vegetables like bottle gourd or snake gourd too to make the dal nutritious.
2) Reduce the quantity of water and you could get dal that is thicker, semi solid in consistency. This makes for an apt gravy for parathas and rotis.
3) You could use chopped and deseeded green chili instead of red dry chili.
4) A simple dal can be prepared by using a mix of two or three different kinds of lentils like moong dal, toor dal & arhar dal.

Image courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Dal/lentils- 100 gms
water- 3 cups
Carrots- 2 diced (optional)
Tomato- 1 diced
Onion- 1 (sliced or chopped)

Turmeric powder- 3/4 tsp
Chili powder- 3/4 tsp

Salt-according to taste

Mustard seeds- 1/4 tsp
Jeera seeds- 1/4 tsp
Dry red chilly- 2-3
Curry leaves- 5-6
Ghee- 1 tbsp
oil-1 tbsp
Asafoetida- 1/4 tsp
Garlic- 3-4 cloves (finely chopped)
Ginger- small piece (finely chopped)

Coriander, finely chopped

Steamed rice

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