Saturday, February 26, 2011

Palak Daal Remix

I am finally back to blogging after a month of traveling to my grad program, visiting friends and family and being knocked out by a wicked flu, I am finally healthy and ready to get back in the swing of things. I had promised my friend Lauren that I would post a lentil recipe since we are both on a lentil kick in your respective kitchens.
So today I wanted to share with you a recipe that I have adapted from Heidi Swanson website 101 Cookbooks. If you haven't checked it out yet, brace yourself to fall in love with her. This is a recipe for Palak Daal or Spinach Lentils. I took out some of the extra cost ingredients to make this an insanely easy and cheap meal. What I really love about these lentils are it make a huge pot one serving actually fills me up and I love eating the leftovers. Serve the lentils with rice and a lemon wedge and you got it going on. 

1 cup / 6.5 oz / 185 g white urid or urad daal, picked over and rinsed
6 cups / 1.5 liters water, plus more if necessary

1/2 pound spinach, washed and finely chopped

1 tablespoon ginger, peeled and finely chopped
 (powdered works just fine)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter

1/2 teaspoon cumin (seeds if you have it)

1 teaspoon pure red chile powder

more salt to taste

juice of 1/2 a lemon

In a large pot over medium-high heat combine the daal and water. Bring to a boil, then add the spinach, ginger, turmeric, garam masala. Reduce the heat, and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until the lentils are extremely soft. You may need to add a bit more water during the cooking process to keep the lentils soupy. After an hour and a half, stir in the salt.
In a separate pan, heat the butter and cumin and fry until the cumin seeds start to pop. Now add the red chile powder and fry for another 30 seconds. Add this butter mixture to the lentils and allow to cook for another five minutes. Taste, and season with more salt if needed. I also enjoyed a touch of lemon juice added at this point. Serve with rice if desired and quartered lemon.
Serves 4-6 with rice.
Prep time: 20 min - Cook time: 120 min

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