Thursday, 17 May 2012

Recipe: Dal soup with Chorizo

Mmmm... dal in soup form with chorizo! Whaaat?! I was so proud when I made this - it tasted sooo good. Chorizo is great as it keeps for ages in the fridge - even a rubbish student fridge like ours - and can add both spice and meatiness to almost anything.

  • Half a red onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 clove of garlic (finely chopped)
  • Red lentils
  • Whole cumin seeds
  • Whole coriander seeds
  • Nutmeg
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Ground tumeric
  • Chorizo (skinned and roughly chopped)
  • Olive oil
  • Pepper
  • Salt
The making:
  1. Gently fry the onion and garlic in a good splash of olive oil. Keep the heat low so that you have time to prepare the spices (next step).
  2. In a pestle and mortar (or in a bowl with a rolling pin or rounded mug - worked well before I got mine) add around 2 tsp of whole cumin seeds, 1 tsp of whole coriander seeds, a pinch of nutmeg, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon and 1 tsp of ground tumeric. [These amounts are only rough, I always end up adding more of what ever I feel the dish is missing near the end. Normally if I don't think it looks yellow enough I just add more tumeric.] Grind all these together so that all the cumin and coriander seeds are no longer whole. Add this mixture to the gently onion and garlic and stir to distribute it all around. It will smell amazing.
  3. Boil a kettle-full of water.
  4. Pour in enough red lentils to have a couple of centimeters over the onion and garlic. Stir theses in to cover them with the spicy mixture. Turn the heat right down and add enough water so that there is a couple of inches over the lentils. It will steam and bubble pretty aggressively when you first add it so add a little and wait for it to calm down then keep adding till there is the required amount.
  5. Adjust the heat so that it simmers gently and leave for around 20 mins. You can keep going back to stir and check on it. If it starts getting too thick then add little bits of water. 
  6. When the lentils are soft and have lost their reddy orange colour it is done! Make sure to taste to test. Add more tumeric and cumin in needed. 
  7. Season with pepper and salt (lentils always need more salt than you think and always need it!)
  8. Serve and top with chorizo
  9. EAT

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