link rel = "image_src” href=”preview-image-here.jpg” / expr:content='data:blog.metaDescription' link rel = "image_src” href=”preview-image-here.jpg” / expr:content='data:blog.metaDescription' Sukanya's musings: MAA KI DAL (Whole Black Lentils Soup)

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Friday, July 11, 2003

MAA KI DAL (Whole Black Lentils Soup)

Black gram or Whole Udad Dal is known as 'maa ki dal'. Whole udad dal is cooked in most north Indian houses. These lentils are small and oblong. When cooked they have a rich, heavy taste and they usually give a thick consistency to the final dish. These lentils can be cooked with red kidney beans (Rajma) to make Punjabi 'maa ki dal'. Here is the recipe for Maa ki dal which would be considered as a comfort food for most North Indians. Using butter instead of oil increases the taste of this dal manifold. For health purposes I have avoided using fresh cream while I made the Maa ki dal although the recipe uses fresh cream. The dal that I cooked in the morning tasted amazing in the night and tasted still better the next day, probably because the spices enter the dal and make it tastier.

Black lentils, whole Udad daal – 1 ½ cups
Onions - 2
Tomatoes – 2
Green chilies - 2
Ginger – a small piece
Garlic 1-2 flakes (optional)
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp

Garam Masala Powder - 2 tsp
Chilly powder – 1 tsp
Coriander powder – 1tsp

Cumin powder – 1 tsp
White Butter – 2 tbsp
Fresh Cream – 2 tbsp
Salt as per taste

Wash, rinse and soak lentils for at least 3 hours. Pressure cook the lentils with a pinch of turmeric. Once cooked, mash the lentils well with the back of a ladle. Keep aside. In a wok (kadhai), Make a paste of one onion, one tomato, the green chillies, ginger and garlic. Chop the other onion and tomato. Heat the butter, fry the cumin seeds, add the chopped onions and sauté for a minute, then add the onion-tomato-ginger-chilly-garlic paste. Fry for 2-3 minutes, Add the tomatoes and fry for another 2 minutes. By this time the masala paste looses it raw smell and gets cooked Add all the powders i.e the Cumin, coriander, red chilly and garam masala powders and mix well and fry for another minute or two. Now add the boiled lentils. Cook further for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. This dal tends to stick to the bottom of the pan hence its important to keep stirring. Add chopped coriander and one tablespoon of the fresh cream (leaving 1tbsp aside). Serve hot garnished with the rest of the fresh cream. Serve hot with Roti or rice.

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