Cold days call for warm soups. This winter vegetable dal delivers a warm deliciousness to your tummy. Full of notable Indian spices and deep flavors, it provides a sensational dish without tedious hours of cooking. Within an hour, you can easily create a dish worthy of family night and friendly parties.
Dal refers to a thick stew prepared from dried lentils, peas or beans that have been stripped of their outer hulls and split. The dish is normally paired with rice or bread as a soaking agent to the soup. Dal is a staple food for much of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal known as Dal Baht–literally dal and rice. Dal has an exceptional nutritional profile. It is typically around 25% protein by weight, particularly for those adopting vegetarian diets. It is virtually fat-free and rich with B vitamins, folic acid, iron and zinc.
Here are some tips to keep in mind:
- I suggest using coconut oil for the natural health benefits.
- I was unable to find brown mustard seeds; I believe mine were simply called mustard seeds but were yellow.
- I used a bay leaf in place of curry leaves. It was what I had in the pantry; the point is to create spice flavor.
- Dice the Serrano pepper finely and remove the seeds.
- I suggest grating the ginger finely rather than chopping it. The pieces become too small and are difficult to chop.
- I used red lentils found in the natural section of my grocery store, but you can use any type of lentils available.
- Use “lite” coconut milk whenever possible. The point is to create creaminess without killing your waistline.
- Tumeric and garam masala are the important spices to achieve the Indian flavors. Tumeric provides a distinctive, yellow color, and garam masala adds the punch of spice.
- Peel, de-seed and cube the butternut squash. The pieces need to be small enough to cook in 20 minutes.
- Cube the potato in similar fashion because they will have the same cook times.
- I broke my cauliflower into roughly one
- Heating the spices brings their flavors to life and makes the room smell scrumptious.
- Frequently stir the ingredients to keep them from burning. Cooking it uncovered keeps the temperature in your control.
I love recreating Indian dishes. Rarely people make these inspiring meals because they are heavily dressed in spices; however, I love the depth of flavor that is created in every inch of the dal. I am constantly surprised at the ease of making such dishes. I am even more shocked to find a way to make the meal healthier. The dish accomplishes both while maintaining flavor and integrity.
Leave a comment with your favorite Indian recipes. Follow my Pinterest for more recipes. Check back again next Wednesday for more tips and tricks from The Cooking Bug.