Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Red Lentils with Cucumbers

Masoor Dal with Cucumbers
Mum's favourite way of preparing red lentils was with onions, tomatoes & garlic. She would sometimes add cucumbers to it, but always peeled them. As a shortcut, I decided to leave them unpeeled and was surprised at how good it tasted. The cucumbers retained their shapes, added a bite and weren't mushy at all.

1 cup red lentils, washed and drained
2 cups water
salt to taste
¼ tsp. turmeric

1 seedless English cucumber (skin on), cubed
2 medium onions, diced
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1/4 tsp. panch phoron (Bengali 5 spice)
Salt to taste
1/4 tsp. sugar (optional)
3 green chillies, slit
1 tsp. ghee

  1. Cook lentils in water, salt and turmeric. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil & fry nigella seeds until they snap, crackle & pop.
  3. Add onions, tomatoes & garlic & sauté until onions turn translucent.
  4. Add cucumbers, stir, cover & simmer until cucumbers soften.
  5. Pour lentils over cucumbers and bring to a boil.
  6. Adjust salt & sugar to taste, garnish with ghee & green chilies and remove from heat.
Serve with hot steamed rice.

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