South Indian-style Lentils

South Indian-style Lentils

Recipe by Gigi Pravda

Serves: 4-6


1 lb Red Lentils - Masoor Dal (I used toor dal, yellow pigeon peas, split)
3 tablespoon Coconut Oil
1 Onion, thinly sliced
2 Serrano Chilies, stemmed and finely sliced, or Green Anaheim Pepper, thinly sliced (for a mild version)
4 Garlic cloves, halved, sprout removed
4 Burlap & Barrel Cardamom Pods, well cracked
4 grams Burlap & Barrel Cinnamon Verum Shavings (in cheesecloth) or 1 cinnamon stick
3 Burlap & Barrel Pemba Cloves
1 teaspoon Burlap & Barrel Zanzibar Black Peppercorns
1 teaspoon Brown/black Mustard Seeds
1 tablespoon Burlap & Barrel New Harvest Turmeric
1 pinch Burlap & Barrel Silk Chili (or more if desired)
1 inch Ginger, peeled and grated (about 1 heaping tablespoon)
4 cups Water
Kosher salt
1 can Coconut Milk
Shredded Coconut, unsweetened & toasted
1 Lime, juiced
Cilantro, chopped or torn

Rinse lentils well, then place in a bowl & cover with water while prepping mise en place.

In a heavy 3-4qt pot, melt coconut oil until very hot. Add onions, peppers & garlic & sauté, stirring frequently until very soft but not browned at all. Season lightly with salt.

Add cardamom, cinnamon stick, cloves, peppercorns, mustard seeds and cook 1 min or until fragrant & mustard seeds begin to pop.

Add turmeric & chili, stirring to coat.

Add ginger & cook until heated through & fragrant.

Add lentils, turning over to coat in spices & oil for a minute or so. Be sure not to let ginger stick to pot & burn.

Add water & some salt; bring to the boil, stirring. Cover & turn heat to barest simmer.

When lentils are soft, turn heat to high, give them a good stir, add the coconut milk & when boiling, cover, turn off heat & let sit 20-30 mins or longer for spices to bloom.

Adjust seasoning.

Serve over rice or plain with a sprinkle of coconut, squeeze of lime & big spoonful of yogurt and cilantro.

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