With Diwali here tomorrow, I just had to post another dahl recipe (also check out this spinach pumpkin dahl). This dahl is epic. It's the best thing to warm you up from the inside with these quickly dropping temperatures. And the best thing: it's so easy to throw together, you don't need to go to cooking school for it :-)
Now when it comes to the list of the spices, it may seem long. You can always use an Indian curry blend as a quick fix, but I love getting individual spices and mixing them myself. That way every recipe doesn't taste the same, because I can change the ratio of the spices to make a unique blend every time. If you find you don't use the spices quick enough (within 3-6 months), I have two tips for you:
Try to go somewhere where you can buy spices lose in bulk. This way you don't need to buy a whole bag of something you only use once or twice a month. You can buy a spoon or two to make sure it's fresh when you use it.
If you have a lot of the spice, and you just don't find yourself using it enough, store it in a zip lock bag in the freezer (make sure you label it, because in the dim light of the freezer cumin and cinnamon start to look similar!). You can use your spice straight from the freezer, and this way you may be able to extend its life to about a year.
Preparation time: 40 minutes
Makes 4 servings (always make a big batch of this, that way you have plenty of leftovers!)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 white onion, finely chopped
3 cups red lentils, soaked at least for 1 hour, then rinsed and drained
3 cups coconut milk
2 Tbsp brown mustard seeds
1 Tbsp virgin coconut oil
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 ½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp ground ginger
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Start with a medium sized pot. Add the coconut oil, onion, mustard seeds, cumin, turmeric, and ginger over medium heat, and stir often for 5 minutes. It should start to smell amazingly delicious.
In the meantime, start chopping the carrots. Quarter them lengthways, then finely chop them into small pieces.
Add the minced garlic to the pot, and stir for 2 minutes.
Add the chopped carrots, the red lentils, and stir. Add 6 cups of water.
Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
Add the coconut milk, and continue to simmer for another 5 minutes.
Add sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to season, and serve.
The flavor gets better when you eat the leftovers the next day! You can serve it with brown rice, chopped cilantro, or just as is!