Black Eyed Bean Curry with Red Lentil and Moong Dal and Chapatis

Posted By Kerri

A meat-free dinner is pretty rare in our house and I would hazard a guess that it’s actually never happened before on a Saturday night. Saturday night is usually all about treating ourselves and being indulgent and, as much as I love pulses and lentils, I don’t consider them to be indulgent.

The reason for this austerity? We were both feeling a little over-fed after the extravagances of the last couple of days and have a meat-tastic lunch planned for tomorrow.

We weren’t however prepared to eat just steamed vegetables and both agree that Indian food is the best suited to this kind of eating so, while I got on with cooking for the freezer, Stephen found a couple of recipes to go with some chapatis. The lentil and dal dish is from Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cookery and the bean curry is an amalgamation of things he found online, most similar to this BBC recipe but with increased spicing.

They both worked well and would have been fabulous accompaniments to rich, meaty curries but on their own, they were slightly too bland to get excited about.

Moong Dal and Red Lentils with Browned Onions
Serves Two

85g moong dal
85g red split lentils
1 pint water
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp salt
2 tbsps vegetable oil
Pinch of ground asafetida
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
3 dried, hot red chillies
1/2 small onion, sliced into half-moons

Combine the dal and lentils and rinse. Drain and add to a saucepan. Add the water and turmeric, stir and bring up to a simmer. Cover but leave the lid slightly ajar and simmer gently for 45 minutes or until the pulses are tender, stirring occasionally. Add the salt and mix. Leave covered on a low heat.

In a frying pan, add the oil over a high heat and add the asafetida, followed immediately by the cumin seeds. Allow the cumin to sizzle for a few seconds and then add the chillies. Once they have turned dark red (after just a few seconds), add the onion. Stir and fry on a medium-high heat until the onion turns brown and crisp.

Add the contents of the frying pan to the dal and then serve.

Oct 30th, 2010

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