A few weeks back I went to the local bio store (kind of like a German version of whole foods) because they have a pretty great selection of dried beans and lentils. I saw some split mung beans and figured I'd find something tasty to make with them. So tonight is the night where I make something tasty with them.
The recipe for the dal tadka comes from Dassana and Amit's website, Veg recipes of India. Originally, it calls for tomatoes and a pressure cooker - neither of which I had so the recipe is an adaptation to that need. I replaced the tomato with the red bell pepper for the sweetness, and the tamarind concentrate for the tanginess - both were ingredients I had on hand and therefore I replaced like this. If you have tomatoes, and a pressure cooker, I'd urge you to follow their recipe instead.
1/2 cup moong dal
1 medium sized onion, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, small dice
1/2 tsp tamarind concentrate
1/2" fresh ginger, minced
1/4 tsp red chili powder
1/3 tsp turmeric powder
3 cups water
2 tbsp ghee
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 fresh red chili, roughly cut
5 small garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 tsp garam masala powder
1/4 tsp red chili powder
1 pinch asafoetida
3/4 cup white basmati rice
Place all the dal ingredients together in a pot on medium-low heat. Cook until the moong dal are soft and fall apart, around 30 minutes.
Get the rice started and cook according to the package instructions. I use a rice cooker which makes all this a cinch.
For the tempering, heat a small skillet on medium heat. Once the ghee is warmed up, add the cumin seeds and let pop a little. Add the fresh red chili and garlic and cook for a minute more. Take off the heat and add the garam masala, chili powder, and asafoetida. Let it heat through for a minute or so. Taste and season with salt as needed.
Add the tempered spices to the dal mixture and stir in well.
Plate a scoop of the rice into a bowl and serve with the dal alongside.
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- Julia Feld