French Puy Lentils are these mottled, dark gems that cook up into pearly black deliciousness.
I love these little guys because they have a peppery flavor that goes nicely with Indian spices. This time, I substituted them for the pink lentils (masoor) I use to make Cauliflower Dal. They were so good, I am never making this dish without them again.
This dal makes a great weeknight meal with some boiled rice and subzi. The lentils cook quite fast and easily in my pressure cooker, although I guess they'd do pretty well too in a microwave because of their tiny size.
It's a busy weeknight so I'm going to stop nattering and get on with the recipe. Here we go!
Cauliflower-Ginger Dal with French Lentils
1 cup French Lentils, cooked in a pressure cooker or put in a microwave-safe bowl with enough water to cover the lentils, and microwaved until tender
1 medium head of cauliflower, separated into florets
1 red onion, sliced thinly
1-inch knob of ginger, grated
1 tbsp canola or vegetable oil
6 green cardamom pods, bruised
1 tbsp coriander powder
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp vegetable or canola oil, 1 tsp cumin seeds and 5 cloves garlic, minced
Heat the 1 tbsp vegetable oil and add cardamom
Stir for a minute and add the onions.
Fry on medium heat until the onions brown at the edges.
Add the ginger and stir for a few seconds.
Add the coriander powder, chilli powder and turmeric and stir to coat with oil.
Add the cauliflower and salt to taste. Stir well, add 1/2 cup of water, cover and let cook until the cauliflower is tender.
Add the lentils and stir well. Cook on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Check salt.
Heat the oil for tempering. Add the cumin seeds and, when they sputter, add the garlic.
Stir-fry the garlic until light brown. Pour the garlic-oil mixture on the dal.
Garnish with coriander and serve hot with rice.
Other delicious recipes using French lentils:
French Lentil Soup With Tarragon and Thyme from the Post Punk Kitchen.
French Lentil and Portabella stew from The Fat-Free Vegan Kitchen.
Here's Opie looking very, very thoughtful. Honestly, sometimes I think he's pondering the meaning of life. Or at least how to get his next treat.
And Lucy Big Ears, in a playful mood after dinner.