Monday, June 22, 2009
A GOLDEN DHALL CURRY
I've been lazy. Absolutely so. I've been vacillating between thinking, imagining, planning and wanting.
Sometimes I wish I hadn't started a food blog because it entails not just cooking or baking but also of planning, of setting up the food so that it looks like it's supposed to, so that colours match, that utensils are appropriate, that the light's pretty, that the camera's battery's fully charged or nearly so, that the memory card isn't full, that my boys aren't in some pitiful or extreme state of hunger, when hub isn't needing me, when I am, myself, not licking my lips at the food with soulfully hungry eyes but most crucial of all, when I have managed to rip my butt off from whatever it is that it's attached to. See how hard it is? It is.
But it's fun too. When it's fun. When the sweat isn't dripping off my brow and down the view finder, when the tripod is feeling frisky enough to join me, when I get to play around with bowls and plates and when no one's salivating on the fringes. Yes it can be fun.
And it would be even better if I made something ridiculously easy to the point of being absurd and that it were so full of flavour that the dish was bursting at the seams.
And that was what I thought of this little dish of dhall curry. It was bursting at the seams . With flavour. It was so good it was unbelievable. This may sound like an exaggeration but it's not. I loved it so much. So much better than the mamak man's dhall curry. So much better than the dhall curries that I have tasted or ever made. So good that I'll watch Food Safari again.
For this was where I got the recipe from. It looked ridiculously easy and ridiculously good even as it shone through all those flickering morsels of light from my tv. When I saw how Maeve O'Meara went "YUMMMM" and how her brows pulled together over the bridge of her nose with pleasure, how she closed her eyes for a split second as if in pain I knew she wasn't pretending. I knew it must have been sooo good. So I made it. And I wasn't disappointed. At all. I ate it with some huffy puffy Pita Bread that I had made.
The recipe............from memory..............more or less................serves 2 or 3.........
1/2 cup lentils ( I used red organic lentils)
enough water to cover the lentils with an inch or two over the top of the lentils
1/2 tsp tumeric powder
2 tsp coriander powder
2 cloves garlic
1/2 inch fresh ginger, crushed to a paste with the garlic above
1-1 1/2 tbsp mustard seeds
1 tsp whole cumin seeds
3 sprigs of curry leaves
1 dried chillie
1 tomato diced (I had forgotten the tomatoes when I made it)
salt to taste
Wash the lentils until the water runs clear. place it in a small pot, add the water, the powdered spices of coriander and tumeric and bring to a boil then simmer until it is soft and cooked through. Add salt and more of the water if necessary. While it is simmering and cooked through prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Pour about 2 tablespoons of cooking oil into another small pan. Heat up the oil and throw in the garlic ginger paste, curry leaves, cumin seeds, dried chillie(whole) and mustard seeds and don't be surprised if they seeds start to sputter and pop. Mix it around a little until fragrant, about 30 seconds, then pour the mixture, oil and all, into the pot of simmering dhall, add teh diced tomatoes and let simmer for another minute or two to allow the flavours to assimilate. Cook it down until the consistency is thickish but still pourable. Taste for salt. Serve. YUM...