Mr treehugger is a superb cook. He has a fair few recipes that he has down to a fine art and one of those is his famous Daal. Try as I might I can never wrangle the Daal recipe out of him, I have been trying for as long as we've been together, he reckons that he doesn't know what he's going to put in it until he starts making it and then it all comes together like some kind of Daal JuJu, which I can totally relate to so I leave him his little culinary secrets. Until now! I told him that I was going to watch him from start to finish and write down everything he did and by gods that is exactly what I did. And what shall I do with this new found knowledge and highly guarded and mystical secret? I shall share it with you of course! HURRAH!
GO VEGAN! GO MoFo!!
Yummy Daal serves 2 as a main course Ingredients 250 grams Red Lentils 800 ml Water (add more if needed at any time) 1 teaspoon Salt (or more to taste at the end) 8 Tablespoons of Olive Oil (that is not a typo!) 250 grams Mushrooms, finely finely chopped 1 Large Onion, chopped finely 1 red Chilli (we left all the Seeds in but you can omit these if heat isn't your thang) 3 Cloves of Garlic, diced 1 inch of fresh Ginger, peeled and diced 1/4 Cup of water 1 heaped teaspoon Turmeric 1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala 1 Tablespoon Tamarind Sauce 1 Tablespoon Tahini 1 teaspoon Peanut Butter Method Rinse the Lentils under a warm tap for a few minutes. Place in a medium sized saucepan with the 800ml of water. Bring to a boil and simmer - add 1 teaspoon of salt. Meanwhile heat 6 Tablespoons of the Olive Oil in a large heavy bottomed pot and add the Mushrooms and Onions. Cook on medium heat for 45 minutes without the lid on and stir every 5-10mins until they are very very Caramalised. It is much better if you can get them to the point where they are almost a burnt mush, but does need constant attention. You might want to add the other 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil if you think the mixture is sticking to the pan too much - a bit of stickage is good and what you're after, but if you're not sure then add the rest of the Olive Oil. Your Lentils will be ready by now. Scoop two thirds of the Mushroom mixture into the Lentils and turn the heat down on both pans. Into the remaining Mushroom mixture add the Red Chili, Garlic and Ginger and cook for 10 mins stirring regularly (to soften up the Ginger etc). Then add the Turmeric and Garam Masala. Cook for another 4-5 minutes to make a kind of paste. Add the 1/4 cup of water to the remaining Mushroom and Onions to get all the lovely burnty Caramelised flavours off the bottom. Now add everything to the Lentil pan along with the Tamarind Sauce, Tahini and Peanut Butter. Let cook on a very low heat with the lid on for 20 mins stirring quite a lot. Take off heat and let sit for 3/4/5/6/24 hours. Heat up just before serving. It is much better to let it stand for 2 hours and re-heat as many times as you can as this breaks everything down and merges all the flavours but isn't essential.