Posted by: Jonjon | July 20, 2009

Curry – Brown Lentils and Moong Dal in a Cashew – Almond Sauce 9/10 July 20 2009


http://foodandspice.blogspot.com/2008/12/brown-lentils-and-moong-dal-in-cashew.html

1/2 cup of whole brown lentils

1/2 cup of moong dal (split mung beans)

1 inch piece of ginger, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon of turmeric

dash of cayenne

6 green cardamon pods, crushed

2 cinnamon sticks

1/4 cup of yogurt

1/4 cup of almonds

1/4 cup of cashews

3 hot green or red chilies

2 tablespoons of ghee or a mixture of butter and oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 1/2 teaspoons of sea salt

1/2 cup of fresh parsley or cilantro, chopped

Method

Rinse the lentils and moong dal in a strainer under cold water. Transfer to a large pot and cover with 3 3/4 cups of water. Bring to a boil, add the ginger, garlic, turmeric, cayenne, cardamon pods and cinnamon sticks. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 30 – 40 minutes, or until the dals are tender.

To make the nut sauce, puree the yogurt, almonds, cashews and chilies in a food processor or blender.

Heat the ghee in a skillet over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and stir and fry until it is browned – about 10 – 15 minutes. To deglaze, add 1/3 cup of water and scrape the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

Add the nut sauce and fried onions into the cooked lentils, along with the salt. Stir to combine and cook for another 5 minutes or so to blend the flavours.

Stir in the parsley or cilantro and serve hot

Conclusion

I thought this was quite good. The nuts thickened the sauce and provided a hint of sweetness. The cinnamon and green cardamom pods really lend the soup a very perfumy fragrance. I used split brown lentils, that looked like green lentils, don’t know if I used the right one or not, but it didn’t turn into a paste after boiled, instead, there was still a subtle  chewiness to it which was a nice change from the pasty red lentils. I halved the chillies by 50% and ended up with just a slight spiciness that was just right.

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