As a first yogi recipe, I’d like to share the most common Indian dish: rice and dahl. A typical dahl is composed of some type of lentils, water, mustard seeds, lots of spices and often carrots, ginger and coriander. It’s a very easy dish to prepare and very filling as well. I never cook dahl just for one meal or person, mostly I cook enough for several meals or people.
Ingredients (serves 2/3)
1 cup of lentils (red or yellow)
2 or 3 carrots sliced
A piece of fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp of mustard seeds
1 tsp of coriander seeds (optional)
1 bay leave
2 tsp of turmeric powder
1 tsp of cumin powder
1/2 tsp of garam masala powder
Salt & pepper to taste
Some wedges of lemon or lime
Fresh coriander leaves
Vegetable oil of your choice (I mostly use coconut oil)
Optional: garlic/ onion to your taste, chili powder/ crushed chili
Wash the lentils thoroughly, until the water runs clear. Peel & grate the ginger. Cut the garlic/ onions if using. Peel & slice the carrots. Heat the oil in a wok. Add the mustard seeds and wait until they ‘pop’. Add the freshly grated ginger (and garlic/ onion if using), stir until golden. Add the turmeric and cumin powder. Stir everything until the spices become very fragrant.
Add the carrots, stir fry to coat the carrots with the spices for 2 minutes.
Add the washed lentils, mix everything well.
Add 3 cups of filtered water, the bay leave and bring to boil. When the water boils, lower the heat, let the mixture simmer for about 15 minutes, make sure to keep on adding water if the mixture becomes dry. The dahl needs to ‘swim’.
Taste the mixture when the lentils become soft, then add salt & pepper to taste.
You can add half of the dahl mixture in a blender, blend it for a short while & add it back to the pan to have a more firm dahl.
Serve with quinoa or rice and add some freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice and coriander leaves.
This is a very hearty meal for cold winter nights but I admit I can eat it any day of the year. Try to experiment with different types of lentils, mung beans, etc. It’s also nice to add some coconut milk to your dahl for a softer flavour.
You can find all the ingredients in your local Indian or oriental shop. I prefer to buy mostly organic, most of the ingredients can also be found in your organic foodstore (except for garam masala I haven’t yet found an organic version in Brussels).