Last night, I was set on redeeming my Indian cooking. Dan said he wanted lentils, so I started searching around for a good, but not too complicated lentil recipe. I found one from allrecipes.com, but as usual, tweaked it to what I had available.
I had most of the spices from Sunday nights dinner, and everything else I needed I picked up from Market Spice and a Middle Eastern store in Pike Place Market. I also wanted to make this roti, which is almost like a vegan version of naan, I found a recipe that was quite simple and fast.
I washed and cooked the lentils first, figuring I could make the roti while the lentils cooked. I’ve never made them before and wasn’t sure how long they would taken to soften – they ended up taking about 35 minutes on medium-high heat. I had Dan mince up the ginger and garlic and cut up the onion while I made the roti dough. He wanted to add a shallot, and I figured why not? After I made the dough, I mixed together the spices to add while Dan caramelized the onions.
While the curry simmered and the lentils continued to cook, I started to cook the roti.
Burning Dan's pans again, just not as bad as the day before
- 1 cup wheat flour
- 1 cup white flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup water
- Extra virgin olive oil
In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, salt, water and oil, until the mixture pulls away from the sides. Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface. Knead until smooth and pliable, about 10 minutes.
Preheat an unoiled skillet to medium heat. Divide dough into 9 equal parts, form into rounds and cover with a damp cloth. Flatten the balls with the palm of your hand, then use a rolling pin to roll out each piece into a 6 inch diameter round.
Brush roti on one side and cook the roti for 1 minute before turning over, then turn again after another minute. The roti should have some darker brown spots when finished.
Green Lentil Curry
- 2 cups green lentils
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 shallot
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons medium curry paste
- 1 tablespoon hot curry powder
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon ginger root, minced
- 1 (14.25 ounce) can stewed tomatoes
Wash the lentils in cold water until the water runs clear, put the lentils in a pot with water to cover and simmer covered until lentils tender (add more water if necessary).
While the lentils are cooking: In a large skillet or saucepan, caramelize the onions in vegetable oil.
While the onions are cooking, combine the curry paste, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, chili powder, salt, sugar, garlic, and ginger in a mixing bowl. Mix well. Splash in a bit of water if the ingredients start to stick. When the onions are cooked, add the curry mixture to the onions and cook over a high heat stirring constantly for 1 to 2 minutes.
Stir in the tomato puree and reduce heat, allow the curry base to simmer until the lentils are ready.
When the lentils are tender drain them briefly (they should have absorbed most of the water but you don’t want the curry to be too sloppy). Mix the curry base into the lentils and serve immediately.
This was quite the success! The spices blended perfectly and the roti was nice and soft. For those who have never had roti before, it’s not supposed to be very flavorful, but more of an accompaniment to currys and sauces. I’m very proud of Dan and I’s second attempt of Indian food!