A light and tasty lentil dish, goes well with rice or rotis.
1 cup yellow split lentils, washed and soaked for at least 3 hours
2 fresh tomatoes, blended with some coriander and 1 green chili
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tsp. garlic paste
2 medium sized potatoes, peeled and chopped into bite sized cubes, then boiled in salted water until ALMOST tender (you can add a touch of turmeric powder to the boiling water to give the potatoes a nice yellow color)
a few fenugreek leaves (methi)
½ tsp. cumin seeds
2 cloves, 1 elchi/cardamom, 5 whole black peppers, 1 small piece of cinnamon stick
1 whole green chili
½ tsp. turmeric powder
½ tsp. cumin powder
½ tsp. coriander powder
some coriander leaves, chopped
some warm water (about 4 cups)
4 tbsp. oil
In a pressure cooker, heat the oil, then add the fenugreek/methi leaves followed by the whole spices (cloves, cumin, black peppers, cinnamon and cardamom)
When they begin to splutter, add the onions and fry until golden, then add the garlic, followed by tomato paste and the cumin powder, coriander powder and turmeric.
Cook together for a minute, then add the blended tomatoes. Let this mixture cook until the water begins to evaporate. Add the lentils and fry together for a few minutes. Add salt, then pour in 4 cups of warm water. Let this come to a boil, then close the pressure cooker and let it cook for about 5-7 minutes.
Turn off, use the safety valve to let out the steam from the cooker (be careful!) then open it and check the lentils. If they are still hard, check that the water is enough in there (if it's reduced too much you can add a bit more) then close the pressure cooker and let them cook for a couple more minutes. If they are nice and soft, add your potatoes and close the pressure cooker one last time and let it cook for 1 whistle.
Let out the steam, open the cooker and taste for salt, adjust accordingly. Sprinkle the chopped coriander and garam masala, do not stir this in. Heat a bit of oil separately (1 tbsp.) and pour it onto the lentils, it will sizzle as it hits the surface and the garam masala will give out an awesome aroma. Now you can mix it all together, and serve!!