You know what's hard to photograph? Indian food. It is ugly. Tastes great, though.
Red Lentil Dal is one of those recipes that comes together in less than 20 minutes, and is healthy and delicious. You do need a pretty robust spice cabinet, but that can be built over time. And I use pretty much all the spices in my cabinet, so it's worth the investment. Except Herbs de Provence. I have no idea what to do with that, but I digress.
Red Lentil Dal
recipe from Happy Herbivore
1/2 cup red lentils
2 cups vegetable broth
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cumin
1 whole tomato, chopped
3 ounces tomato paste (half a can)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 small onion, diced
1 teaspoon paprika
1 Tablespoon ginger
dash cayenne pepper
1 Tablespoon coriander
2 teaspoons garam masala
In a saucepan over medium heat, saute onions and garlic in 1/4 cup water until translucent. You can also use a light flavored oil, such as canola.
Add spices, except coriander and garam masala, and cook for 1-2 minutes. Keep an eye and stir often to ensure they don't start to burn.
Add lentils, broth, tomato paste, tomato and coriander.
Bring to a boil, reduce to low, and simmer, covered for 15 minutes.
Add garam masala and stir to combine.
Cover and set aside for 5 minutes.
Garnish with chutney and cilantro, if desired.
I served the lentils alongside spinach and rice. Cook brown rice for 20 minutes. Add half a bag of fresh spinach. Cook 10 minutes more, until rice is done and spinach is wilted. Remove from heat and mix in a few spoonfuls of plain greek yogurt.