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Recipe: Rice with Lentils (Dal)

Rice with Lentils (Dal) Recipe

A vegan version of this famous Indian recipe.

Serves: 12 servings

Recipe courtesy of my good friend Amruth Ravindranath with inspiration from Chef Atul Kochhar

Ingredients Rice

  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil cold pressed
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 2 cups of water

Ingredients Lentils (Dal)

  • 1 lb black or green lentils
  • 1 green or red chile (optional)
  • 1 minced ginger (with the rind is fine)
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • 2 tablespoons cold-pressed coconut oil
  • Cumin seeds
  • coriander powder
  • Red chili powder (optional)
  • 1 onion , chopped
  • 3 chopped tomatoes
  • 1 carrot , chopped (optional)
  • 1 potato , chopped (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • ½ liter of coconut milk (optional)
  • Fenugreek leaves to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Rice Procedure

  1. In a pot, add the coconut oil and fry the rice for a couple of minutes without stopping stirring.
  2. Add the 2 cups of water and stir
  3. Cover and cook over high heat. When the water begins to boil, lower the heat to a simmer and leave half covered.
  4. When all the water is consumed, turn off the heat and leave covered for 10 minutes so that the rice finishes cooking.

Lentils (Dal) Procedure

  1. Add the lentils, green chile, ginger, and salt to a pressure cooker. Cover with water (at least 1 inch of water above the volume of the lentils). Cook for 15 min on high heat. If you don't have a pressure cooker, cook the lentils in a normal pot, uncovered, for at least 90 minutes.
  2. In a deep skillet, heat the coconut oil. When hot, add the cumin seeds.
  3. Add the onion and fry for a couple of minutes.
  4. Add coriander powder and red chili powder. The spices cook quite quickly so you have to keep moving them. Don't let them burn.
  5. Add the chopped tomato and stir. Add carrot and potato if desired.
  6. Add the lentils with a ladle. It is important that there is water left in the pan so that the lentils do not dry out.
  7. Let the flavors mix well for 30 minutes at a boil, stirring constantly. If it starts to get too dry, add more lentil water.
  8. Add coconut milk if desired (this gives it a creamier touch)
  9. Add the garam masala and stir.
  10. Add fenugreek leaves if desired and salt and pepper to taste.
  11. Serve with the rice base. Accompany with chopped coriander and naan.