Do this, but slightly less ginger
- 3 cups red lentils (we just used green last time), cleaned and washed
- 9 cups water
- 3 tablespoons ghee or oil (I prefer grapeseed)
- inch of asafoetida or hing (optional) (we didn’t do this)
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 medium white or red onion, finely diced (1 cup)
- 1 pinch of coarse white sea salt
- 1/4 cup grated ginger
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced (1 heaping tablespoon)
- 2-3 Thai chiles, stems removed and finely chopped
- 2 – 3 teaspoons garam masala
- 2-3 teaspoons coriander powder
- 1 – 2 teaspoons red chile powder
- 2 – 3 teaspoons coarse sea salt
- 1 heaping tablespoon chopped cilantro
- Add lentils and water to a roomy and heavy pot. Bring to a boil, then turn heat down and simmer for 15 – 20 minutes. I cooked mine uncovered and kept an eye on it to make sure it does not overflow. At first, you’ll see a white harmless film form over the lentils. Just scrape it off and discard, and continue to boil until the lentils are soft. Once finished, turn the heat off and put a lid on the pan. Let the lentils sit while you finish the tarka.
- Make the tarka, basically a tempering in Indian cooking. This is where our lentils get all their flavor. Take a saute pan, and heat your ghee or oil over medium-high heat. Add asafoetida, cumin and turmeric. Cook about 40 seconds until the seeds start to sizzle and turn a slightly reddish color.
- Add onions and a pinch of salt. Mix every few minutes and cook 2 – 3 minutes until the onion browns slightly. The salt draws out moisture and helps the onion brown.
- Add ginger, garlic, and chiles. Cook for another few minutes.
- Add garam masala, coriander, and red chile. Mix well and cook another 20 second or so. Always be cautious adding powdered spices, as they can easily burn at this stage.
- Take this mixture and carefully add to the cooked lentils. Stir well.
- Add salt and cilantro. Mix well and serve over rice, with roti or naan, or as a soup. At this point you can also pull out the immersion blender or whisk and blend it down a little. We prefer to eat it slightly chunky.