Monday, 1 February 2016

Tadkewali Masoor ki Dal


I was wondering what to post next while cooking lunch a few days back.
Words and sentences form and fade away.
I get ideas for writing during the most mundane of tasks and chores during the day. But cannot leave the job at hand and sit down to write pronto, for obvious reasons.
And by the time it is evening and I finally get to settle down, the mind is blank.
No ideas, no themes, no recipes either.

I had once started a series of my lunch or dinner plate on facebook. That idea had come from the fact that while I cook a whole lot of stuff for everyday meals, I do not always get the time to set up the table and click photographs properly. ( That too has been neglected for a while now.
)
So if at least I posted a photo of the whole lunch plate, there will be a compilation of my daily cooking for my readers.
And for me, it will be easier to decide later what to photograph and post on the blog.
Like for instance the numerous sabzis I make. Or the bhajas.
And especially the dals.

I cook different kinds of dals almost everyday, for every meal.
B cannot do without dals.
While I am not a big fan of dals, I do cook them in different ways ... read with different kinds of temperings, for him.
With time, I have learnt to differentiate between the different kinds and ways of cooking dal.
And it all depends upon the temperings, whether you will have a light, soupy dal or a thick and rich dal.
Or a one pot meal kind, like the dalma. Or just plain boiled and garnished with some plain, fragrant ghee.
I cook dal in almost every possible way and all of the above.


So, while chopping onions to temper a pre cooked masoor dal that day, I decided to make a post on it too. I know there is not much to cooking dal. But then again ... like I said ... no meal is complete without it too.
And who knows, like me, one can convert too.
And accept a bowlful by the side of a lunch or dinner plate with ease.

So I have decided to click and post every single kind and way of dal I cook in my kitchen, henceforth.

For this Masoor dal, I already had dal cooked with some salt + turmeric powder, sitting in the fridge.
So all I had to do was add some tadka or temper it.
Now, the problem I face is B does not like masoor dal.
Unless it is the Chilkewali massor dal ... i.e. the unskinned, black ones.
And I love masoor dal. It has such a light, beautiful flavour ... I can eat it just plain boiled.
Next, I love it with the typical Bengali temper of Paanch phoron + dry red chillies.
B does not like it that way too.
So, I have to add all kinds of stuff to jazz it up a little.


Need :

Red lentils - soaked and cooked with a pinch of salt + turmeric powder
Onion - chopped
Ginger - chopped
Garlic - chopped
Fresh green chillies - chopped
Tomatoes - chopped
Jeera / Cumin seeds - a little
Turmeric powder
Red chilli powder 
Sugar - a little
Salt - to taste
Ghee ( or cooking oil ) - a little
Fresh coriander leaves - chopped
Hot water - to cook

How to :

Heat ghee or oil.
Add the jeera.
When it starts to splutter, add the onion + garlic + green chillies.
Fry well.
Next, add the ginger + tomatoes.

Fry well , on low heat, till the tomatoes soften.
Add a little turmeric powder + red chilli powder.

Now add the dal and hot water.
Check for salt and add the sugar too.

Cover and let it simmer till everything comes together.
Remove cover, check for consistency. Add water and boil some more, if needed.

Sprinkle chopped coriander leaves.
Remove from heat.

Serve hot with rotis. Or rice.
We had it with soft, fluffy rotis and Aloo Borboti fry.

As you can see, my writing is still a mess. But I do believe that I will be able to restrain and collect my thoughts with a little more time.
Till then ... stay around folks.
And take care.
And of course ...
Enjoy!!