It's been a while since I've done a recipe post but I thought I must share this recipe here.
Like most of my cooking, it's pretty low effort. The end result is good and the dish has been a saviour whenever we have had scratchy thoughts thanks to the Bombay winter.
'Winter' in Mumbai, of course, means the time when you switch off the aircon and reduce the speed of the fan.
I hit upon this dish one evening when we both had bad throats at home and wanted some soup and didn't want to wait and call in from a restaurant.
I suddenly remembered a dish my mom would cook called 'dal sheddho' in Bengali (boiled dal/ pulses). She would boil the pulses with some basic spices and eat it. She would try to get me to have it too when I was young and even called it a posh sounding 'lentil soup' to tempt me. It wouldn't work and I wouldn't touch it.
Drawing from those memories I thought I will experiment with a dal soup and that's how this dish came about. There was some caluliflower around so I added that to the dal too and used the pressure cooker, the trusting cooking vessel of the modern Indian woman, to cook it. To bring in a taste element I added some ghee. You could use butter too.
The result was a semi-solid mix which I then smashed and blended by pushing the pieces of cauliflower with a ladle and by adding a bit more water.
Turned out to be a tasty and hearty broth and has been our go to dish this winter.
I guess it will work even better in places which are actually cold!
Here's the recipe:
Ingredients (for 2) : 1 teaspoon ghee, 1/2 teaspoon chopped ginger + 2 garlic cloves = 1/2 teaspoon turmeric - all immunity giving stuff, 1/2 a chopped medium cauliflower (once a winter vegetable), 1 cup of moong dal, ideally but not necessarily pre- soaked, 2.5 cups of water, 1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
1. Heat the pressure cooker/ pan
2. Add the ghee
3. Once it melts add the ginger and garlic. You can add some whole jeera or cumin
4. Add the dal and stir for 30 sec
5. Add the cauliflower & turmeric, salt & sugar and stir for a minute
6. Add water. Bring to boil
7. Shut pressure cooker lid. Let 3 whistles happen
8. Reduce flame and let it simmer for ten minutes
9. Switch of the gas and open the lid after a while
You can eat it by itself or with toast and roti. Might go well with hot steamed rice too.
The dish has Bengali roots and yet can work for people across communities I feel.
10. Mash the contents with a ladle and eat hot