Spinach dhal (lentil soup)

Spinach dhal (lentil soup)

Jun 28, 2023Angela Jenkins

Servings: 8

Prep Time: 30 minutes (plus overnight soaking) Cooking Time: 15 minutes

      500grams yellow split pea lentils

2 tablespoons butter

  1. teaspoon black mustard seeds (optional)

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

  1. cloves garlic, peeled and sliced in half lengthwise

1 dried whole red chili (optional)

1 medium onion, finely chopped

  1. medium tomato, finely chopped

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

¼ teaspoon black pepper

       500 grams spinach

       500ml water

1 tablespoon Maldon salt

Juice of half a lemon

1 teaspoon asafetida powder (optional)

Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish

Rinse and soak the lentils in a covered glass bowl in the fridge overnight. Make sure the water covers the lentils by about a half inch. Rinse out the lentils the next day, transfer to a large saucepan, and add 1 liter of water. Boil the lentils for about 30 minutes, until soft. The texture should be smooth, like a paste. Alternatively, you can cook the lentils in a pressure cooker — follow the directions supplied by your pressure cooker’s manufacturer.

Heat the oil in a medium stainless‑steel pot over medium heat. Add the black mustard seeds, if using, and cook until they pop. Add the cumin seeds, garlic, dried red chili, if using, and chopped onion. Cook for 3–5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent. Add the tomato, turmeric, and black pepper, and stir to combine. Add the spinach and allow to wilt for just 1 minute.

Add the lentils, lower the heat, and allow to cook for about 20 minutes. Add the water, as the mixture will be thick, and you want to prevent the lentils from sticking.

Season with the salt, a squeeze of fresh lemon, and the asafetida powder. Serve hot, garnished with chopped cilantro.

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