- 2 tbsp / 30 g ghee , or 1 tbsp oil + 1 tbsp/15g butter
- 2 green cayenne chillies , deseeded and cut into chunks (optional)
- 1 medium onion , finely chopped (brown or yellow)
- 6 garlic cloves , finely chopped
- 1 tbsp ginger , finely chopped (1.5cm / 3/5″)
- 8 fresh curry leaves , or 6 dried
- 1 tomato , chopped
- 1/2 tsp Handi ground cumin
- 1 cup dried chana dal , yellow split peas or other yellow lentils
- 4 cups / 1 litre water
- 1/2 tsp Handi turmeric powder
- 1/8 tsp Handi garam marsala
- 3/4 tsp Handi salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp / 20g ghee , or half each butter + oil
- 1 eschalot or 1/4 small onion , halved lengthways and sliced
- 1 tsp Handi cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp black mustard seeds (optional)
- 3 dried chillies , broken in half, seeds removed (optional)
- Soak Lentils: Rinse lentils and leave to soak in plenty of water for 1 hour. Drain in a colander.
- Heat ghee/oil in a heavy based saucepan over high heat. Add green chilies and fry for a minute until it starts to blister.
- Add onions and fry until softened.
- Lower heat to medium, add garlic, ginger and curry leaves. Cook for 1 minute until garlic starts to turn golden and smells amazing.
- Add tomatoes and cumin, cook until tomatoes start to break down and thicken to a paste – which will take about 2 minutes.
- Add lentils, water, turmeric and salt. Stir, bring to simmer, cover and simmer gently for 1 hour. Stir two or three times during the hour.
- Remove lid and simmer gently for 30 minutes to thicken, stirring every now and then. The daal is ready when it has a consistency like porridge – some lentils should be intact but some have broken down to thicken the sauce.
- Stir through garam masala at the end. Adjust salt if desired.
- Pour over Tadka (if you are using it) and stir through.
- Serve Dsal over Handi rice, garnished with a sprig of coriander if desired.
For Tadka – sizzling spices (if you opt for it)
- Heat ghee in a small pan over medium heat until hot but not smoking.