We are just getting warmed up for the month o’ beans and today’s was excellent again.
In an effort not to go too heavy on one regional flavor I thought I’d tap India for today’s delicious bean adventure. Saying you’re tapping India is like tapping America, it’s too vast to claim just one way of doing things, but I being a generalist at the moment.
What’s cool and funky about today’s dish is I used curry leaves for the first time ever. I didn’t know these little darlings even existed until last week. I’ve tasted them before when having gone out to a restaurant for curry. I’ve tried to get that same flavor with the spices in my cabinet but always missed the mark. These darlings are fantastic and if you are like me wondering what was missing, I’ll bet it’s the curry leaf.
Red Lentil Zucchini Dahl2c. red lentils, rinsed
3 small zucchini, sliced
3 curry leaves
3 T. oil
1 large onion
1 T. corriander, ground
2 tsp. cumin, ground
2 red chili peppers
5 cloves garlic
1inch ginger, peeled
5 black pepper corns
Bring the lentils to boil in plenty of unsalted water. After 20 minutes add the zucchini. Cook lentils and zucchini until soft. If it’s too wet simmer longer. Thin with water if too thick. In a small skillet sauté onions in oil on low heat. Make a paste of the spices, garlic and ginger. Once the onions are soft add the spice paste and sizzle in the skillet 3-4 minutes. Add the spices to the lentils. Add salt. Cook 5 minutes longer.
Frankly, I just ate this straight up without rice or bread, making happy noises all the while.
So do you have a recently discovered ingredient? Or one that you found that you didn't even know you were missing?