Whole Red Lentils with Cumin & Shallots Sabut Masoor

Whole Red Lentils with Cumin & Shallots Sabut Masoor

A lovely, nutritious dish, full of fibre and protein. I love it with Tomato Rice , a yoghurt relish and some leafy vegetable. You could also serve it with Indian flatbread, pickles, relishes and a potato dish. Indian grocers sell this dal as whole masoor or sabut masoor. The red lentil is whole, not split, and still has its brownish skin.

For how many? Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 200 g/7 oz whole red lentils (sabut masoor)
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1½ tbsp olive or peanut oil
  • generous pinch of ground asafoetida
  • ¼ tsp whole cumin seeds
  • 2–3 dried hot red chillies
  • 1 good-sized shallot, peeled and cut into fine slivers
  • butter (optional)
  • lime or lemon wedges (optional)

Instructions

Wash and drain the lentils. Place them in a medium saucepan, add 600 ml/1 pint water and bring to the boil. Skim off the froth from the surface and add the turmeric. Stir, cover partially and simmer gently for 1 hour. Mix in the salt.

Put the oil in a small frying pan and set over a medium heat. When hot, add the asafoetida. After a few seconds, add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle for a few seconds. Add the red chillies and fry until they darken, then quickly stir in the shallot. Fry until the slivers turn a rich reddish colour and become crisp.

Tip the contents of the frying pan over the lentils and cover immediately to entrap the aromas. Stir before serving, adding about 2 pats of butter if you wish. Serve with the lime wedges on the side (if using).

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