DSCF8814_aufmacherDo I ever stick to a recipe? Hardly. But the Assam Nariyal Dal from the Dhaba Cooking School, is so awesome that I would not change a thing. These lentils are a sheer delight of aromas for body and soul. The recipe was created by TAZ (Taz). Try it soon.

COOKING ADVICE: Have all ingredients handy and prepared. This dal cooks fairly quickly. Don’t burn your spices while you are scrambling to cut tomatoes.

  • —-STEP 1—-
  • 2 cups red (Masoor Dal) lentils, picked & rinsed; set them to boil in 7 cups of water; reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes
  • Tomato paste

    Tomato paste

    —-STEP 2: DWARKA—- Sauté (flavor-roast) next ingredients in pan on medium heat and little oilDSCF8093 for 7-10 minutes; add this to the lentils

  • 1/2 onion, diced, fry until glazed
  • 1/2 inch ginger, grated into paste
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1-3 whole, dried chilis
  • 2 Tbs. sambhar masala (~ 3min)
  • 2-4 Tbs. tomato paste (~ 3 min)
  • —-STEP 3—- Add the following ingredients to the lentils to complete the flavor
  • 1 can unsweetened coconut milk (15 oz.)
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 lemon, juice & zest
  • 1 Indian bay leaf (tej patta)
  • 2 cinnamon sticks (2 inches long)
  • 3 star anise pods
  • kosher salt & black pepper to taste

DSCF8812FINISHING: Cook the dal for another ~30 min or until lentils are soft. Adjust seasonings and remove the spice “drifters.” Serve hot with idli (rice cakes) or a rice dish. The aromas of Assam Dal are invigorating and inspiring. Your gourmet nose will enjoy the process too.

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