This month's Indian Cooking Challenge is to make Gujarati dal from Sukham Ayu - an award winning Ayurvedic cook book written by the talented duo - Pratiba & Jigyasa.
What you need:
Tuar dal - 1/2 cup
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Yam - 8-10 small(1") sized pieces
Drumstick - 2, cut into pieces
Groundnuts - a handful
Dhania powder - 1 tsp
Tamarind - a gooseberry sized piece soaked in water
Dates - 4, pitted and halved
Jaggery - a small piece
Garam masala - 1/4 tsp
Green chilli - 1, slit into two
Corriander leaves - for garnishing
Ghee - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Fenugreek seeds - 1/4 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Red chilli - 1
Curry leaves - a few
Soak dal in 2 cups of water for 30 minutes. Cook it in a pressure cooker until soft. Mash it well and transfer to a thick bottomed kadai. Add all the other ingredients except garam masala and corriander. Add a cup of water and mix well. Cook on low heat for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. By this time, both the yam and drumsticks will be well cooked.
Heat ghee in a kadai. Add all the tempering ingredients. When the mustard seeds pop, pour this over the dal and let it simmer for five minutes. Switch off the heat. Sprinkle garam masala and corriander leaves on top.
What I think of the dish:
This is a very simple, yet flavorful dish. Despite using familiar ingredients, the taste of this dal is something that was quite new to me. The dal tends to thicken as it cooks and later as it cools. So do keep this in mind and add sufficient water in the initial stages.