Saturday, January 07, 2012

A foray into food blogging

 I have really been enjoying reading food blogs of late. Mainly because I love food and love cooking. Notable recipes that I have tried and tested on blogs include: mint yoghurt pasta - unusual but really yum if you like tzatziki and really easy! And also Swizz Chard Tart, sounds good but tastes pretty good (though reduce the sugar if you ever want to try it). See the picture below for mine and my Canadian cousin's attempt -->

So I decided to do a little food blogging of my own. The recipes that people ask me for more than anything else are either curries (what with a Sri Lankan family and all!) or soup (since I make soup every day at work).

So today at the behest of Mr Parmaham I am blogging a lentil curry recipe which I knew as I grew up as parrapou (a tamil word with no fixed english spelling) and which you readers are most likely to know as dahl. NB this recipe is loosely based on how my mum showed me how to make it just before I left home, but there are 101 ways to make this. I've tried to give at least a couple of the variations hence why the overused parenthesis. This is how I made it tonight.

Lentil Curry (serves 2)


1 green chilli finely chopped
1/2 white onion diced
2 garlic gloves diced
2 tomatoes diced (optional)
150g red lentils (approx)
4 cardamom pods (nearly essential)
1/2 tsp coriander seeds/mustard seeds (optional)
1 tsp cumin powder (essential)
1/2 tsp ground ginger (I would say essential!)
a dash of lemon/lime juice (approx 1 tablespoon)
a good amount of seasoning to taste

Dice the onion, finely chop the garlic and green chilli. If you want it spicy keep the seeds in. As you can see, I did (unsurprisingly!)

Stir-fry these in a little oil with the seeds and pods (on this occasion I used coriander seeds and cardamom pods) until onions are soft (but not brown).

Add red lentils and hot water to just covering the lentils. Add to that the ground spices. On this occasion I used cumin, ginger and a pinch of ground coriander. Season at this point. Bring to the boil, then cover with the lid and simmer at the lowest possible heat. At this stage, add the lemon/lime juice. I used lime juice today.

After another 5 mins or so add the diced tomatoes.

Keep stirring and adding water until the curry turns into a dollopy slop as below (takes around 15 minutes to get to that stage). You need to keep checking it and stirring on regular occasions otherwise it sticks to the bottom. Don't worry if you add a little too much water, just take the lid off and turn the heat up a little until it looks like it should. Now it's ready to eat!

Tastes particularly good accompanied with rice, yoghurt and a boiled egg - hooooo yeah! :)


Penni said...

Dhal Bhaat (Daal Bhat? They did not teach us how to spell it...) !!
A staple in Nepal...I keep meaning to try the recipe the school didi (cook) gave us...I don't think it was made with red lentils though...

Dish said...

No idea!! I think there's a million ways you can make dhal. This is more Sri Lankan in flavour, so probably different, and in tamil it's "parapou" - again no idea how to spell it! You should try it and see if it is different or not!