Friday, December 25, 2009

Dalitoy - Daalitoy recipe - Daali Thoi recipe - (The "lentil soup") - Everyday Konkani Delight

I spent some time wondering what the first post recipe should be about... something fancy, fish or chicken, non vegetarian, spicy or flamboyant?

After some thought - the answer was simple - I will start with "Dalitoy" - the quintessential comfort food for Konkanis everywhere. Dalitoy is a staple accompaniement to rice, usually served with some simple vegetable side-dish (upkari).

Daalitoy
The dalitoy recipe below is just the basic version for bachelors and first time cooks. There are about half a million different versions of this simple dish, but don't worry about it. Here it is:

Serves - 4
Preparation time - about 30 minutes

Ingredients -
  1. Toor Dal (also called Lentils/English, Thogari bele/Kannada, Turchi dal/Marathi, Kandi pappu in Telugu) - 1/2 (half) cup
  2. 1/2 (half) spoon Turmeric (haldi) powder
  3. 6 green chillies
  4. 3 red chillies
  5. 1/2 tsp mustard seeds - for seasoning / tempering
  6. 2 tsps oil - for seasoning / tempering
  7. 2 sprigs Curry Leaves - for seasoning / tempering
  8. Hing (also called asafietida) - 1 small chickpea sized - for seasoning / tempering
  9. Salt to taste
Method:
  1. Wash the Toor dal thoroughly - twice.
  2. Pressure cook dal, turmeric powder and green chillies with about 1 litre of water - until soft.
  3. Optional and recommended- you can mash the dal with the flat end of a cup - this makes the curry more thicker.
  4. Remove from cooker and heat in a seperate vessel - adjust consistency and add salt to taste.
  5. Heat the oil seperately - add the Hing, curry leaves, red chillies. Be careful not to burn it.
  6. Add the seasoning to the dal.
  7. Enjoy with rice and some upkari of choice! Tastes awesome with a spoon of Ghee (clarified butter)
Tips and Other variations
  • You can add 2 chopped tomatoes to the pressure cooker - gives a nice tangy taste.
  • Seasoning - can be done with onion and garlic instead of Hing. But never use both garlic and hing together - as they both are strongly pungent.
  • Mom's secret ingredient - Add 2 spoons of dried Kasoori Methi leaves just before seasoning - imparts an unbeatable new flavor to the curry.

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