Slower Cooker Dry Spiced Dal

It has been exactly a week since we came back from our 3 weeks vacation in Peru; I think I need more time to process, but here are some highlights :  my brother-in-law’s wedding, participating in a Peruvian cooking class, Cusco/Machu Picchu, delectable Peruvian foods, people, and different landscapes!  I have to go through and sort out a little over 2000 photos, but I am in a major procrastination mode…

Meantime, we got so used to 3 weeks of “Winter” in Peru, it’s almost a shock to my system to come back to this heat and humidity!  My mother has graciously stocked our refrigerator with Korean foods so that’s what we ate the first few days.  Due to the heat, I have resorted to my slow cooker and made my Slow Cooker Butter Chicken two days ago.    I still had some left over butter chicken today and I wanted to make something to accompany it.  Few months ago I purchased The Indian Slow Cooker Cookbook and wanted to try the Dry Spiced Dal.  I thought today will be a perfect day to try this!

3 cups (603g) dried, split, and skinned yellow moong dal or split and skinned urad dal, cleaned and washed thoroughly
1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 (1 inch ) piece ginger, peeled and grated
2-3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 Tablespoon salt
3 cups (710ml) water
1 Tablespoon cilantro
chopped green chiles, for garnish (optional)
chopped onions, for garnish (optional)
Put the lentils, onion, ginger, garlic, cumin, turmeric, salt and water in the slow cooker.
Cook on high for 2 hour, stirring once or twice.  Check to see if the water has been absorbed.  If not, cook for another 30 minutes until no liquid remains.
Garnish with cilantro, chopped green chiles, and onions. 
My opinion: I added about 2 cups of chopped collard greens to this dish.  Naturally, I had to add a little more water to it and increased the other ingredients slightly (except the salt).  I also added about 1 teaspoon of garam masala.  You can eat this with rice, an accompanient to other curry dish, with roti or naan.  I personally loved the taste because it’s so wholesome tasting with the right amount of spice.  Also, don’t forget, this dish is packed with awesome nutrition from the lentils and the greens (not to mention the medicinal component from turmeric and cumin seeds!).  Even thought the recipe says to cook for 2 hours, I cooked this for 4 hours and it was perfect!                                                               

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