I still remember my grandfather making sure to end his meal with a nice bowl of Masoor Daal soup mixed with the juice of half of a lemon and a green chilli smashed in it – a perfect combo of health and taste. Not a single day was gone in his life without that bit of hot and sour concoction. Cereals are rich in soluble fiber which helps in controlling the carbs. The science behind that is the speed at which digestion occurs. The daal that you eat actually slows down the digestion process, thus resulting in a healthy appetite and body function, and of course good sugar maintenance. And despite all these benefits, the daal doesn’t get all the credit and likes it deserves. I mean how many of us really fantasize of a special dinner of daal or lentils. If you do, you are one of the rare ones. This bland ingredient can actually be transformed to delicious food, starting from the regular sambar and pakoras to delicious non-veg twists like dal ghost or murighonto (fish head cooked in lentils). In fact, if you are out of anything on the side with food that you have cooked, you can make a yum finger licking chutney. Now one such daal dishes that I love is the daal upma. And today, this recipe is all about that.
Urad daal (yellow lentils) – 100 grams (soaked in water overnight)
Tarmarind paste – ½ tsp
Ginger- 1tbsp of grated ginger or ½ inch whole ginger
Garlic – 4 garlic clove
Green chillies – 2
Salt to taste
Onion – 1 medium – chopped
Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
Tomato – 1 medium cut in small pieces
Sugar – ½ tsp
Oil – 2 tsp
Ghee – 1 tbsp
Overnight soaked Matar daal (peas cereal) and coriander to garnish
Salt and Pepper to season
Grind the masoor daal, half of the chopped onions, chillies, ginger and garlic. Once it turns into a nice smooth paste, leave it aside.
In a wok, heat oil and pour the mustard seeds.As they start sputtering put the remaining onions and fry them till they turn pink, now sprinkle the salt and sugar and transfer the tomatoes and tarmarind paste. Mix it well. Reduce the heat to low and stir it till the tomatoes are fried. Now transfer the paste and stir the mixture for 5 minutes. Cover and let it cook for 15 mins, while making sure that you stir every four to five minutes. After 15 mins, lift the lid and pout a tsp of the ghee and mix. Cover and let it cook for another two minutes. Now remove from heat. And let it rest. Meanwhile, strain the soaked matar daal and season it with some salt and pepper. Before serving pour the rest of the ghee on the daal upma, mix and serve with a side of some crunchy matar daal and coriander.