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The Caterer

Rajasthani five-lentil mix dhal

11 September 2006
Rajasthani five-lentil mix dhal
The Cinnamon Club makes two 2kg (dried lentil weight) batches per week. This quantity has been scaled down to 1kg of pre-cooked lentils (cooked lentil weight). Ingredients (Serves six to eight) 100ml oil (for example, sunflower oil) 2-3 dried Kashmiri chillies 3-4 cloves 1tbs cumin 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped 400g red onions, finely diced 500g tomatoes, chopped and seeded
1kg (approx) cooked "five-lentil mix" (60g dried weight of each lentil, mixed together and washed) 1tbs ground Kashmiri chilli powder 2tsp turmeric Salt 100ml ghee Coriander leaves Fenugreek leaves (optional) !](![](![](![Method Heat the oil in a large sauteuse till it smokes. Add, in quick succession, chillies, cloves, cumin and garlic (1). Keep stirring the pan to extract maximum flavour. Add the onions and fry them until they've softened, reduced and started to brown (2).
Stir in the tomato pulp (3). Bring to the boil. Cook until the moisture from the tomatoes dries off, add the turmeric, chilli powder and then the lentils. Bring back to the boil. Add salt. Cook out over a lower heat for 20 minutes or so, stirring regularly. The dhal should become like a thick soup. Add a little water (or cooking liquid) to it if it seems on the dry side (4). During the final simmering, the masoor will have broken down to a mush, but the other lentils will keep some of their texture. Stir in the ghee and check the seasoning. Before serving each portion, add chopped fresh coriander and optional fenugreek leaves. Note: this is a dhal that is better prepared one day (or one service) at a time, although the lentils can be pre-cooked Cooking times "Five-lentil mixture" - about one hour.
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