This particular recipe is one that I’ve been making for years with slight variations, it’s very cheap to make as it sticks to basic spices that most people would already have stocked in their pantry. Daal or dahl is a traditional lentil curry that can be found all across India. Each region has its own take on the recipe. Some variations of daal favour a thinner almost soup-like sauce, I personally like it thick to get the real concentration of flavour. You can also feel free to substitute whichever lentils or pulses you might have already in your cupboard.
This is one of those great meal prep dishes, you can soak your lentils overnight then set up on a Sunday afternoon and let it simmer away while you get on with other things. For that reason, this recipe yields roughly 8 serves since that’s the way I usually prepare it. It keeps for about a week in the fridge, I personally always keep a few serves stocked in the freezer for days when I don’t feel like cooking.
- 1 cup black lentils soaked overnight
- 1 cup red lentils soaked overnight
- 1 cup mung beans soaked overnight
- ½ cup cashews soaked overnight and blitzed to a paste
- 2 medium brown onions
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons brown mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon chilli powder
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 400 g tins diced tomatoes
- 1 L vegetable stock
- In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds into the pan and stir to coat in the oil. Place the id over the pot and allow seeds to fry until they pop and the oil begins to change colour.
- Remove lid and stir in the onion, sauté for 10 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic and ginger then sauté a further 2 minutes. Stir in all of the dried spices and cook stirring for a further minute or until fragrant.
- Add the tomato and stock then stir to incorporate and scrape the bottom of the pan. Finally add the remaining ingredients and stir to incorporate.
- Cover and simmer for 2-2 ½ hours. Stir every 15-20 minutes and add water if sauce becomes too thick. Serve over basmati rice and top with fresh coriander.