A soothing venture…

by Sunita on November 29, 2007

Split red lentils or ‘masoor dali’, as we call it in Assamese…

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…occupies a special place in our hearts…it’s constant presence on my kitchen shelf and the eagerness with which it is welcomed at our dining table, is ample proof of this. We adore the simple flavours of this dal, which, I feel, tastes best if kept simple. They have a very short cooking time and has that unmistakable earthy aroma. It is also high in proteins, and I remember ma urging us to have bowlfuls of this dal due to this reason.

Now, most of my Indian readers must be very well acquainted with these split red lentils and must be preparing them regularly in many delicious ways,…but the following very simple version occupies a special place in our hearts, and comforts us. Isn’t it amazing how such simple recipes can give one so much of pleasure.

We had our dinner yesterday of plain rice accompanied with the following recipe for split red lentil soup and some roasted cuminy potato wedges( recipe here)…a nice, simple and comforting meal…one that leaves you feeling happy and contented. …which made me want to share that happiness with all my readers and a few more , so am sending it to dear Suganya as an entry for her Vegan Venture…nothing spectacular, but very soothing indeed! The recipe for my lentil soup follows…

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What’s needed-

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8-9 handfuls of split red lentils, washed and drained
4 glasses of water ( may need some more later)
1/2 a medium sized butternut squash, peeled, the insides scooped and chopped
6-7 french beans, stringed and cut into 1-1and 1/2 inch pieces
2 small or 1 large tomato, chopped
3 pods of garlic, chopped
1 tsp finely chopped ginger
1/3 tsp turmeric powder
salt to taste
a small bunch of fresh coriander, chopped

How to-

  1. Place the lentils in 4 glasses of water in a pan over medium heat, along with the garlic, ginger and salt.
  2. Simmer till the lentils are half cooked, discarding the froth collecting on the top.
  3. Add the squash, beans and tomatoes and cook till both the vegetables and the lentils are done( the lentils lose their shape). More water may be needed at this stage, but take care not to add too much at a time.
  4. Add the turmeric , stir and then add the coriander.
  5. Simmer for 2 more minutes and remove from heat.
  6. Serve hot on it’s own or with some plain rice.
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As I said earlier,we had it with some plain rice and roasted cuminy potato wedges…and, well…put a soothing end to another hectic week day.

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{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kribha November 29, 2007 at 11:59 pm

I’ve never cooked with this dal before. Does it get the yellow color after it’s cooked? Looks so mouthwatering.
Another thing Sunita…I did make ginger tea for your ginger event but I didn’t send it to you as I felt it was too common. Anyway, I’ll try to catch up for the next event.


2 Rajitha November 30, 2007 at 12:07 am

aah..i loove massor dal..it is really fast to cook..i usually do a simple tadka and i really can eat bowlfuls of it..i do have frozen cubed butternut squash with me..i think i should make this yummy soup :)


3 Suganya November 30, 2007 at 12:26 am

Nice and comforting. I have everything on hand. I am gonna try this tomorrow. Simple recipes like these are a boon to us cooks. Thanks for participating.


4 Laavanya November 30, 2007 at 1:32 am

i love this cute looking dal too but have never tried to make it with veggies…. nice.


5 sher November 30, 2007 at 2:56 am

Wonderful!! I just had red lentils yesterday. I love them, so thank you for this recipe!!!


6 musical November 30, 2007 at 3:08 am

Love masoor daal, Sunita. and i totally adore the use of butternut squash here :) . I actually make whole moong daal with pumpkin/buternut squash/zucchini/crookneck squash etc, and its really delightful. Will try masoor daal with squash too, because i know i am gonna’ love it :) .

Thank you sooooooooo much for this! I love the picture of daal with all the assorted veggies, so simple and yet so wholesome!


7 sunita November 30, 2007 at 9:27 am

kribha,thanks, and yes,it does turn into a pale yellow colour…looking forward to your future particiption.


8 sunita November 30, 2007 at 9:28 am

rajitha, I make the tadka version as well…but this way is our favourite…give it a try.


9 sunita November 30, 2007 at 9:29 am

suganya, you’re most welcome…do give it a try, and yes, simple recipes do save the day :-)


10 sunita November 30, 2007 at 9:32 am

laavanya,isn’t this dal great…would love to know your version.


11 sunita November 30, 2007 at 9:33 am

sher, you’re most welcome…do give it a try…nice to have you over…


12 sunita November 30, 2007 at 9:36 am

musical, I’m loving the sound of your version, and I’m sure that will taste great too…love whole moong dal…will definitely try it :-)


13 RAKS KITCHEN November 30, 2007 at 9:55 am

Looks lovely sunita…Nice entry with that!!!


14 Bharathy November 30, 2007 at 10:27 am

Very Homely recipe,Sunita.
Wonderful shots as always!..

I’ve mailed you regarding my entry for “Think Spice”.Waiting for a reply, asap :)


15 Jaya November 30, 2007 at 11:05 am

dear Sunita,
lovely recipe for masoor dal ,thanks for sharing.
You have a lovely blog,Great going with 2 kids..
all the best
hugs and smiles


16 sunita November 30, 2007 at 12:28 pm

rak’s kitchen,thanks…we did enjoy the simple meal.


17 sunita November 30, 2007 at 12:30 pm

bharathy, thanks…and I have already replied to you some time ago :-)


18 sunita November 30, 2007 at 12:32 pm

jaya,thanks and welcome to my world…


19 aparna November 30, 2007 at 1:13 pm

I like dals and masoor and chana are my favorites. Lovely soup.


20 Asha November 30, 2007 at 1:24 pm

Don’t you just love that color of Masoor dal? Masoor is so quick to cook and tastes so good too. I love the simple dal, great entry Sunita!:)
See you in 2 weeks babe, take care.


21 curryinkadai November 30, 2007 at 1:25 pm

Wow looks delicious!!!


22 sunita November 30, 2007 at 1:33 pm

aparna, thanks…glad you droped by…


23 sunita November 30, 2007 at 1:34 pm

Asha, we really adore it…have a wonderful holiday …will miss you though…


24 sunita November 30, 2007 at 1:36 pm

curryin kadai, thanks…nice to have you over…


25 Bharathy November 30, 2007 at 2:55 pm

Thanks..Haven’t received the reply mail, Sunita!


26 sunita November 30, 2007 at 4:05 pm

Bharathy,you’re most welcome dear…I checked my mailbox again to make sure that I have replied…still a mystery :-( ..anyway, alls well that ends well :-)


27 Bharathy November 30, 2007 at 4:10 pm

Hurraaaaayy HUGS!!!:D…Thanks a billion!!!:D


28 sunita November 30, 2007 at 4:34 pm

You’re most welcome dearie :-)


29 Bharathy November 30, 2007 at 6:00 pm

I had published the next moment after seeing your green flag :) …I had another one of the same READY with the logo and the link back thanking you which I had done even before your consent :D ..
There is some problem with the mail box..Hope you received the Entry containing mail.

Thank you Sweety :)


30 sunita November 30, 2007 at 6:32 pm

Bharathy dear, you’re most welcome…loved your entry…thanks.


31 Happy cook November 30, 2007 at 6:52 pm

Looks delicious.


32 sunita November 30, 2007 at 8:56 pm

happy cook, thanks…have a great weekend


33 Siri December 1, 2007 at 4:03 am

Awesome dal Sunita!


34 sunita December 1, 2007 at 8:56 am

siri, thanks…have a great weekend.


35 Meera December 1, 2007 at 4:47 pm

Delicious daal!! Thanks for the recipe


36 Rachel December 1, 2007 at 5:35 pm

That is a yummy looking dal there. Dal with rice..yummmm!

hey why arent your pics visible?


37 Sandeepa December 1, 2007 at 8:08 pm

Sunita, I love Masoor Dal, my favorite.


38 sunita December 1, 2007 at 8:14 pm

meera,you’re most welcome…it’s our favourite.


39 sunita December 1, 2007 at 8:17 pm

rachel…glad you like it…can you not see the pictures? ..I’m not sure why :-( …I can see them though.


40 sunita December 1, 2007 at 8:18 pm

Sandeepa, it is indeed a flavourful dal, isn’t it?


41 Suganya December 4, 2007 at 12:24 am

I made the same menu y’day for lunch. Perfect for this wintery weather. Thx :)


42 sunita December 4, 2007 at 1:02 pm

Suganya, you’re most welcome…so glad you like it.


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