Red Masoor Lentil – “Hyderabadi Red Dal”

Red Masoor Lentil- “Dal”- Serves 4 This recipe is from Madhur Jaffrey’s famous cookbook, Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian .This one requires only a few ingredients and really brings out the flavor of the lentils. I am such a big fan of this recipe that it almost didn’t make it to the dinner table on account of all the bowlfuls I “sampled” during preparation! I did eventually manage to save some however and served it up as a side dish to my Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani. Enjoy! Ingredients: 1 cup red Masoor lentil 3 tablespoons (for tempering) plus 2 tablespoons for boiling the lentil 2 dried red Kashmiri chillies 3 garlic cloves, peeled and whole 1/2 teaspoon black mustard seeds “Rai” . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Black Daal or “Kaali Daal”

“Kaali Daal”- Serves 6 Black “daal” or “Mah ki daal” or “Kaali Daal” is a creamy, tasty lentil preparation that goes well with Indian bread and other rice preparations as well. Made with whole black gram, fresh ginger, red chilly powder, fresh garlic paste, cumin seeds, cream (I use 2% milk instead) and fresh cilantro. The longer you let the lentils cook the better – usually 3+ hours. Ingredients: 1 cup whole black gram “urad dal” 3 medium tomatoes grated 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1 tablespoon oil (I use canola cooking oil) 1/2 cup milk or cream 1 heaped tablespoon of fresh chopped ginegr salt to taste Tempering the lentil 2 tablespoons of butter 1 teaspoon cumin seeds 1 green . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Sai-Bhaji Tikkis

I love making these tikkis as a healthy afternoon snack or appetizer with drinks. These tikkis or vegetable patties are made with left over Sai Bhaji. Sai bhaji is a delicious vegetable made with spinach, dill, tomatoes, carrots, potatoes and lentil. I dry the sai bhaji mixture by cooking it on medium flame in a saucepan or flat griddle. Then, add a pinch a garam masala powder and bread for binding. Make round patties and shallow fry. Serve hot and enjoy! Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups sai bhaji 6 slices bread, soaked in water and squeezed tightly to remove the water 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder 2- 3 tablespoons oil salt to taste Method: Heat the sai bhaji in a saucepan . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Moth bean or Turkish Gram “Matki Usal”

This simple moth bean dish is a stand-out at any event. Its great as a salad or a quick protein-filled snack for anytime during the day. Ingredients: 1 cup Moth bean, washed and soaked overnight in water, remove water the next day and allow to sprout for another day by keeping it in a warm place covered 2 green chillies, cut in half to get 4 pieces 1/4 teaspoon asafoetida 1/2 teaspoon black mustard “rai” 1/2 teaspoon red chilly powder 1/2 teaspoon turmeric 2 teaspoons sugar salt to taste 2 tablespoons oil 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro for garnish Method: Heat oil in a vessel. Add asafoetida and black mustard. The oil has to be hot enough for the mustard . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Tangy Yellow Lentil “Hubby’s Favorite”

This tangy “dal” is a delicious combination of tomatoes, ginger, curry leaves, fenugreek seeds and tamarind. Served on a bed of white rice with a side of minced cauliflowers (“gobi kheema”and potato chips (or home fries), this flavorful “dal” is a staple in our household. Of all places, I learned of this dish’s exalted status in my new home while honeymooning in the Maldives! Within a few days of feasting some of the finest seafood ever prepared, my husband began craving home cooking. Many blissful days later, I found myself writing notes as my mother-in-law introduced me to this fine recipe. For the dal: Cook the dal with water, turmeric, 1 tablespoon oil and salt to taste. Keep aside. I . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Yellow Lentil Soup”Toor Aamti”

The lentils used in this recipe are “Toor” which are split and yellow. They are sold with an oily coating, I prefer to use the dry ones. This dal is a staple in most Maharashtrian households. “Toor dal” has a mild nutty flavor and is rich in protein and nutritious. This recipe is from my mom in law but I do know another variation on this, made by my mom (I shall save that for another post). This recipe has coconut milk and is tempered with Asafetida, curry leaves and whole cumin. This lentil gets its subtle sweet taste from the sugar and coconut milk and the tamarind paste adds a bit of tang. Dal tends to thicken when kept . . . CLICK TO READ MORE