Ready in 45 minutes
Fragrant from a Bengali spice blend sauteed in butter, this dish can be as mild or spicy as you like.
Bengal Red Lentils with Spices (Bengali Masar Dal) From Classic Indian Vegetarian and Grain Cooking, Julie Sahni
1. Pick, clean, wash and cook the dal using the red lentils, chilies, turmeric, salt and water. Put the ingredients in a deep pot; bring to boil. Stir often to make sure they do not lump together. Cook over medium heat, partially covered for 25 minutes. Cover, reduce heat, and continue cooking for an additional 10 minutes or until soft.
2. While the lentils are cooking heat the usli ghee in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. When it is hot, add the onion and fry, stirring constantly, until golden brown (about 10 minutes). Add the ginger and tomatoes and continue frying until the tomatoes are cooked and the contents reduce to a thick pulp (about 8 minutes). Stir frequently to prevent sticking and burning.
3. Blend the fried onion-tomato paste and salt to taste into the dal; continue cooking for an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until the flavors have blended in. Keep the dal on a low simmer while you make the spice-perfumed butter.
4. Measure the spices and place them right next to the stove in separate piles. Heat the usli ghee in a small frying pan over medium-high heat. When it is hot, add the panch phoron spice blend. When the mustard seeds are spaterring and the cumin turns a little darker (about 15 seconds), add the bay leaves and chili pods. Continue frying until the chili turns dark (15-20 seconds), turning and tossing them. Turn off the heat, add the garlic, and let mixture fry, sizzling for 25 seconds or until it looks light golden. Pour the entire contents of the pan over the dal, mix well, and serve.
REC.FOOD.RECIPES From rec.food.cooking archives. Downloaded from G Internet, G Internet.
Corrected a typo
farbenfreudig 6y agoCorrected a typo
ReneeM 8y agoIt's delicious even if you can't get all of the spices.
ReneeM 8y agoI made some minor fixes in the ingredients and instructions. [I made edits to this recipe.]
ReneeM 8y agoI loved the fragrance of the sauteed spices. I substituted butter for the ghee, and I left out the spices I didn't have for the Panch Phoron. I used imitation maple flavor, since it is mostly fenugreek. I used cayenne and jalepeno in place of hot green chilis (using less because I know jalapenos are stronger). There must be more than one kind of red lentil. I stopped the lentils cooking after about 10 minutes -- they were very soft already, and would have been complete mush by 25 or 35 minutes.