Monday, January 31, 2011

Chana dal

Sunday night we had some people over for dinner that the rest of my family had met, but I had not. They were a family originally from India and the Mother was vegetarian, so (quite bravely I thought) I decided to make one of my favourite Indian vegetarian dishes Chana Dal.

This is a dish that comes together quickly, especially if you use canned chickpeas like I did.

To feed 8 as a side dish.

  • 1 large onion chopped 
  • 1 cube of garlic/ginger/jalapeno seeRogan Josh
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of coriander
  • 1 tablespoon of cumin seeds
  • 1 star anise 
  • 1 large can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 whole Cinnamon stick
  • Hot pepper flakes to taste
  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro.

Cook the onion in the olive oil in a large pot until the onion is golden, add the garlic ginger and jalapeno.

Add the spices

Stir thoroughly then add the tomatoes and chickpeas salt and pepper

Simmer gently for about 1/2 hour until the flavours have all melded well together.  Just before serving add the cilantro and coconut milk.

With steamed rice this would make a complete meal, tasty, easy and cheap and it only gets better the next day. On Sunday though  I served this as a side along with the lemon chicken, some roast eggplant and red pepper,  asian style green salad  green beans and some assorted little potatoes roasted in olive oil.

The menu was a mixture of different ethnic roots but then so were the diners so I guess it doesn't really matter.

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