Red Lentil Tarka Daal Recipe
My brother spent a long time in India and he was taught this recipe whilst living in a tiny village in the Northern part of India. It is so simple and so delicious. It makes a lovely accompaniment to other curries or simply eat it on it's own, on hot buttered toast with a hard boiled egg! This is a must have recipe if cooking on a budget. The 'tarka' refers to the seasoning. This is rich with butter, ghee or oil with flavours such as garlic, chillies or whole spices. Play around with your favorite.
300g red split lentils, rinsed well with water
1 teaspoon turmeric
Oil for frying
Garlic, finely sliced (try and make the slices the same thickness)
Put the rinsed lentils in a pan and cover with water that comes up around 1 inch higher than the lentils. Add the turmeric and salt. Slowly bring to the boil and gently simmer until the lentils are just tender (but still lentil shaped). You may need to add a wee bit more water when cooking if all looking too dry.
For the tarka, heat some oil (mix with butter too) and fry the garlic. Just before it is about to burn (about 1-2 mins) pour the whole mixture, oil, butter and garlic into the cooked lentils and stir.
You can of course change the 'tarka' - add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, onions, or sliced chilli!
Try our other Lentil Curry Recipe or have a peak at some of our other vegetarian curry recipe ideas and vegan curry recipe ideas in our blog post Vegetarian Curry.
Notes on lentils
Lentils are high in fibre, full of good protein, low in calories, basically fat free, quick and easy to cook, ludicrously cheap, substantial, versatile and delicious.