Dal is one of the most comforting and delicious food. A bowl of rice and dal is literally heaven on a plate for me. You can make different variety of dal by varying the dals and ingredients. You can make a simple dal tadka, or add in some vegetables to make a masala dal or a spinach dal. Dal goes well with plain rice, pulao and chapathi. Also lentils are a rich source of protein, dietary fiber, iron, folate and minerals.
Remember the panch phoron masala I had posted sometime back? Here's a simple and delicious Bengali style masoor dal using panch phoron. Panch phoron is nothing but a flavorful and fragrant spice mix of cumin, fennel, mustard, nigella and fenugreek seeds. This spice mix when tempered in ghee releases a wonderful aroma and imparts a beautiful flavor to the masoor dal. The dal tastes best with chapathi as well as plain rice and jeera pulao. Serve the dal hot along with some sabzi / vegetable curry.
BENGALI MASOOR DAL RECIPE
1 cup masoor dal / red lentil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 inch ginger piece, grated
3-4 green chillies, finely chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
¼ tsp turmeric powder
Salt to taste
4-5 sprigs of coriander leaves
Half a lemon
For the tempering:
2 tsp ghee
2 tsp panch phoron
1/4 tsp asafoetida / hing
2 dried red chillies, halved
1. Wash the dal well and add 2 cups of water. Pressure cook the dal with turmeric powder for 2-3 whistles or until soft and mushy.
2. Mash the dal well and set aside.
3. Heat ghee and add the panch phoron masala. Once it starts popping and gives out good aroma, add the asafoetida, red chillies and fry for few seconds.
4. Add the chopped onions and fry till they become soft. Then add green chillies, ginger and fry for another 2-3 minutes.
5. Add the tomatoes and fry for 4-5 minutes. Then add the dal, salt and 2-3 cups of water. Mix everything well and bring to boil.
6. Cook the dal for another 3-4 minutes or till it reaches the required consistency. Add lemon juice and garnish with coriander leaves.
1. If you prefer a thinner dal, add more water and adjust the consistency.
2. Adjust the amount of green chillies according to your spice level.