Vegetable for shallow frying (I’ve little oil left, so used ghee)
1 large aubergine
4 green cardamom pods, bruised
1/2 tsp fennel powder
1/2 tsp tumeric powder
1/2 tsp dried ginger powder
Pinch of asafoetida (hing)
300g natural yoghurt
I salt aubergine before I use it (unless I’m roasting it). This is seen by some as ‘old-fashioned’, but I find that it removes excess moisture and ensures that the vegetable crisps up nicely when fried, and doesn’t go ‘spongy’ when you cook it any other way. Often, people who don’t like aubergine find the texture objectionable, not the taste. Anyway – to salt the aubergine, top and tail it, cut it into discs and pop the disks into put it in a plastic sieve or colander (metal, salt and water not being the best combination). Shake a generous amount of salt over the eggplant (you can use cheap salt like Saxa for this job!). Leave it to drain over a bowl or in the sink for about half an hour. Then (and I know this seems counter-intuitive) rinse the salt off under running water and gently squeeze the discs against the sides of the sieve to get all the water out. If you like, you can pat the discs dry in kitchen paper or a tea towel.
Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed frying pan until it is very hot.
Fry the aubergine on both sides until it’s golden brown in colour.
Drain on kitchen paper and keep to one side.
Discard all but 1 tablespoon of oil.
Drop the cardamoms, spice powders and asafoetida into the oil.
Add the yoghurt immediately.
Season with salt and heat through, stirring constantly, until the gravy is heated through.
Add the fried aubergine and serve immediately. If you have coriander, it’s nice to garnish the dish – I’ve none the moment, but we survived. 🙂
There are two types of urid dhal. One is whole urid – which is black – and the other is split urid – which is white. For this recipe, I used the split urid, which doesn’t need much soaking.
1.2 Litres of Water
150g Urid Dhal
1 Teaspoon of Ginger
2 Green Chillies
1 Teaspoon of Cumin Seeds
2 Bay Leaves
1/2 Teaspoon of Turmeric Powder
Pinch of Garam Masala
Squeze of lemon juice (I’ve loads of lemons – they were on special 2 weeks ago!)
1/2 Tin of Tomatoes (I still had half a tin in the fridge from Day 2)
Wash the urid dhal – put it in a sieve and run cold water over it until the water runs clear.
Put the lentils in a pot with enough water to cover them and soak for about 15 minutes.
Change the water on the lentils and bring to the boil.
Simmer the lentils until they are soft, but not mushy – 30-40 minutes.
While the lentils are cooking, prepare the masala.
Peel and chop the onion.
Cut the chillies into small pieces (I use a scissors).
Bash the ginger with a pestle in a mortar. If you don’t have those, bashing it on a chopping board with a rolling pin or wooden spoon works just fine.
When the dhal is nearly cooked, start the masala.
Heat the oil in a pan and add the cloves, bay leaves and cumin seeds.
When they start to splutter, add the onion and ginger and green chillies.
Fry for a few minutes then add the dhal, lemon juice and tomatoes. Stir gently over a medium heat for about 3 minutes.
Add in the garam masala and serve immediately.
I’m not sure I should post this seeing as I didn’t get it right, but I will anyway! 🙂
300g Plain Flour
1/2 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
1/2 Teaspoon of Salt
1/2 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
150 mls Hot Milk
120 mls Hot Water
2 Teaspoons of Nigella (Onion) Seeds
Take the racks out of your oven and cover them with tin foil.
Turn the oven on to maximum.
Sift the flour, baking soda and salt together in a bowl.
Mix the baking powder into the hot milk and leave it for about a minute. When a few bubbles pop up on the surface of the milk, add it to the flour and mix well.
Knead the mixture, adding the water to make a soft dough. Keep kneading until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. Keep it covered, in a warm place, for 3-4 hours, until it rises.
Divide the dough into 6-8 balls. Shape them into oblongs and pop them in the oven for about 15 minutes. The bread is done when it rises slightly and brown spots appear.