Saturday, January 28, 2017

Curried Lentil Flour

Sometimes, when there is too much to be done, help comes in the form of Ali. When he comes I can sit back rest assured that the window panes need not be checked for specks of dirt or any weed in my small planting area is left unattended. He is so good at his work that he has been a godsend on several occasions. He is a daily wage earner and a father of five daughters and one son. Every time he goes home which is several hours away from our city, he brings back some fresh garden produce. In summer it's mangoes and in winter it's sweet potatoes and leafy greens. This time he brought more greens and a small packet of black lentil flour. My first thought was...fritters! But he told me that it's usually cooked into dal. 
Spiced black lentil flour
And he told me that it was spiced with chillies, turmeric, and other masalas. I took a whiff and it was aromatic in an earthy way. And the fact that it had been roasted before grinding made it even more fragrant. Since this was new to me I thought I would send this as an entry to MLLA (My Lentil Love Affair) an event being hosted for this month by one of my favourite bloggers, Rafeeda of The Big Sweet Tooth.

1/2 cup toasted and spiced black lentil flour
1 large onion, peeled and diced fine
1 medium onion peeled, sliced and fried in enough oil to a golden brown
A pinch of cumin seeds
A pinch of fenugreek seeds
1 tsp mix of garlic and ginger pastes
Salt to taste
2 green chillies, scored lengthwise
2 tejpatta
Coriander leaves for garnishing

Put the lentil flour in a bowl and add about a cup of water. Mix it till no lumps remain. Set it aside.
Heat a pan and add the oil. As soon as it comes to smoking point, add the tejpatta and the cumin and fenugreek seeds.
Add the chillies and the diced onions and the garlic/ginger paste.
Cook till the onions turn pale and then into a light brown.
Pour the flour and water mix. Add enough hot water as needed depending on the consistency that you like.
Cook for about 10-12 minutes on medium flame till it thickens slightly. It should be like a thick dal.
Switch off the flame and transfer the contents to a serving bowl.
Garnish with the coriander leaves and fried onions. 

This is excellent with both rice or rotis. I only needed another side dish. In this case it was the saag that came from Ali's garden. As you can see from the recipe that I did not use too many ingredients. But variations can always be made with this recipe too.

Linking this post to MLLA #103, conceptualized by Susan and hosted by Lisa.
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