Black Lentils Cooked in Butter and Cream

daal.jpg

This is the nicest thing I have eaten for a while. I might make it again for dinner tonight it is so good and I need some comfort food.

Life here is currently crazy, the puppy is crazy, his paw is getting better but he now has the major squirts again – despite everything being lovely earlier in the week.

I am not sleeping – well I am sleeping a lot worse than my usual not sleeping. I am trying to finish another book and am very, very stressed about it as the chapter isn’t really coming together and, and, and ……; the proofs came in for the book I finished in the summer and another I finished before that; I am juggling other different work projects which are in their early stages; I have book proposals to peer review; I had a horrid meal out last night (which reminds me while I stay in and eat my own food) and I kind of feel overwhelmed with everything. I probably need a swim in the sea.

So black lentil daal it is again for dinner as it will make everything all right.

I made my own garam masala for this – no shops round here sell this so necessity was the mother of invention and all that …. I can’t believe it has taken me so long to make it.

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The recipe is adapted from India’s Vegetarian Cooking – we are mainly vegetarian (we eat our own meat once or twice a week) but recently we have been more vegetarian – probably all the killing I reckon.

Black Lentils Cooked in Butter and Cream: 1 onion; couple of cloves of garlic crushed; about a tsp of grated ginger; 1 tsp turmeric powder; 1 tsp chilli powder; 1 tsp garam masala; 2 large tomatoes or half a tin; 150g black lentils – I used beluga lentils as that is what I had; 4 tbs double cream; fresh coriander for garnish; sunflower oil or butter.

Heat oil/butter in a saucepan and fry onion until golden, add ginger and garlic and cook for a little bit. Add the spices and tomatoes and cook for a little longer. Add lentils and about 300ml of hot water, bring to boil and then simmer for about an hour – maybe less – until the lentils are cooked and soft, but still retain their shape. Take off the heat, stir in the cream and serve.

We eat it with homemade flat bread and yoghurt, rice with butter and mango chutney – I need to figure out how to make mango chutney …. and grow mangoes.

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N.B. This book makes me realise I need to get some different types of lentils – right now I miss Birmingham and London and their astonishing lentil selections!

N.B. Zeph’s secret dog name is CMF-Zeph …. remember how Kainaat’s secret dog name was Barky Barkalot the Poo Eater?

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