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Dal - Typical Indian Red Lentils

Dal made with red lentils and served with rice belongs to any India meal.


1.5 cup of red lentils

1 tbs oil (Organic Coconut Oil is great to use)

5 cloves garlic

1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp coriander seeds, crushed

1 pinch aesofetido (if you have)

1 inch fresh ginger root, finely chopped or grated

1 tsp dry red chili

1 tbs turmeric powder

1 sprig coriander, fresh and chopped for garnishing

2 tbs ghee for garnishing (or olive oil if you are vegan or don't have ghee) What is ghee?




Wash the dal (red lentils) in water 2-3 times and drain.

In a pot, heat oil, add garlic, cumin seeds, when the cumin seeds sizzle, add aesofatido and the lentils. Stir for a moment, add 3 cups of water and bring to a boil, then continue to cook on simmer. Add ginger, chili, crushed coriander seeds and turmeric.

Add more water as needed and continue to cook covered and on simmer, occasionally stirring to make sure the lentils don't stick to the bottom. Add salt only when the lentils are nearly soft.

Before serving add the ghee and sprinkle with fresh coriander.

Preparation & cooking time: 40-45 minutes

Serves 6 persons


For serving an Indian dinner I would typically cook "Dal" and rice and a vegetable curry, served with Indian bread, and yogurt with a sprinkle of cumin powder and a variation of chutneys and pickles – not to forget to serve also fresh, raw hot chillies and raw onion rings for my Indian friends.

In India we used to drink "fresh-lime-soda" with the food: still or bubbly water with some fresh squeezed lime juice and a pinch of salt or sugar. I had to get used to like salty drinks but when it is hot, a lightly salted drink feels actually better than sweet. Or you may want to serve cold beer with the food.

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