Here's a quick pantry meal if, like me, you haven't been shopping and have no fresh vegetables or meat or eggs so just keep going out for dinner or eat cereal on the couch. (Oh, just me?) And yes, I recognize that it's probably just me that has basmati rice and red lentils in "my pantry." But you could use regular lentils and plain white rice...or just order it in from your local Indian restaurant. And maybe throw in a few samosas and alu paratha and...
Red Lentil Dal
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups water
1 cup dried red lentils
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup basmati rice, cooked according to package directions
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
1 jalapeño chili, seeded, chopped (optional)
1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.
2. Stir in the garlic, turmeric, cumin, and ginger and cook for 2 minutes. Add the water and lentils and bring to boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 15 minutes.
3. Puree the dal partially with an immersion blender with a few quick pulses, if desired. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with rice and top with cilantro and chili, if desired.