Cooking with Cumin
Yes, cumin! Cumin seeds are the start of most Indian dishes. This is one ingredient I make sure I never fall short of in my pantry. Adding cumin seeds in the beginning of the cooking process gives the dish a nice aromatic flavour. Cumin is considered to have digestive properties and is also considered to have cooling properties. One of the best ways I can think of using cumin seeds is in the tempering of Dal. Dal is a staple dish in the Indian diet made of lentils. There are many different kinds of lentils as well as many different ways it is cooked in the Indian household. But none the less, Dal is eaten almost everyday. This is one of my most simplest Dal recipes and also one of my favourites! Dal (Indian Lentils)
Ingredients: 1 cup red split lentils (called lal masoor in Hindi) 2 cups water 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes 1/2 cup thinly sliced onions 1-2 chopped green chilies 1/2 tsp red chili powder 1/2 tsp turmeric powder 1 tsp cumin seeds salt, to taste 2 tbsp cooking oil chopped coriander leaves for garnish Method: Bring the lentils to a boil in 2 cups of water. Let it simmer for 10-15 minutes on medium heat till the lentils become soft and slightly mushy. Add more water if needed. Add the green chilies, tomatoes, salt, turmeric and chili powder and cover cook for another 5-10 minutes till tomatoes soften. In a frying pan, heat oil and add cumin seeds. When they start to sizzle, add onions and fry till they turn golden brown. Pour the fried onions and cumin seeds of the lentils. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and serve hot. Dal is best eaten with warm Rotis and a side of mango pickle!