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Sunday, September 8, 2013

Katti Mung Dal

When you bring your work home, you tend to spend more time working than you would at the office.  Time flies as you concentrate and all of a sudden your stomach growls, telling you it's probably time to get off your fesseps and make some dinner.  Well, yesterday, I realized too late.  I felt like I betrayed my inner self by not spending any time in my happy place.  Today, I'm making up for that lost time.  Oh does it feel good to cook again!  Tonight's dinner is rocking the building (the aroma already is doing it).  I felt Indian was appropriate because.. well, I don't really need a reason.  I was actually fully absorbed by my Thai Cuisine book, but nothing really called out to me.  I didn't know what I wanted, but I wanted it to be comforting.  And then comforting became the theme, and I naturally switched to dal.  Any dal any day would blow me away.  Today, I'm featuring yellow mung dal.  It's a tangy dal recipe using tamarind concentrate, and to which I added a few of my own ideas.  The original recipe is with masoor dal (coral lentils), which I'm out of.
Adapted from SMTC
Serves 3 as a main, 6 as a side
1 cup yellow mung dal (or masoor dal) thoroughly washed
3 cups whey or water
1 tsp grated garlic
1 tsp grated ginger
1/4 tsp turmeric
some chili powder
1 sprig curry leaves
2 Tbsp tamarind concentrate
1 tsp amchur
1 tsp baobab powder (secret weapon)
salt to taste
cilantro for garnish (I left out)
1 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 dried red chilis
1 sprig curry leaves
1.  Cook the dal with the whey, garlic, ginger, turmeric, chili powder, and curry leaves in a pressure cooker for 10 minutes under pressure.  If you are doing it stovetop, cover and simmer for about an hour, checking for doneness.
2.  When done, add the tamarind, amchur, baobab powder and salt to taste.  Let it boil once.
3.  Make the seasoning.  Heat the oil in a wok.  Add the cumin seeds until they sputter, then add the chilis and curry leaves and cook for about 30 seconds.  Add the seasoning to the dal.
The taste test is fabulous.  I love the tanginess.  (Not everybody does, but I don't really care)
The only sad part is now I'm out of curry leaves.. and it's a battle every time I need to go to a specialty store.  I burned myself in the exact same spot as I did last week, but on the right side.  There is something strange going on.
I'm serving this as a side with
Sabut Masala Turkey (using turkey breast instead of chicken thighs)
Mattar Paneer Curry (adding carrots and replacing the mint+cilantro with kasoori methi..MmmmMmm!)
Jeera rice and Rotis.

I've been having tons of trouble posting since my internet has been going on and off.  My heart goes on....

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