dal · indian food · Main course · vegetarian

Meat Free Monday Tadka Dal Fry With Grilled Augergines

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Start the week off right with Meat Free Monday!

I love Meat Free Monday so much that it has now become my most favourite day to cook at home.Mostly because it is such a great cause first to challenge myself to bring in more vegetarian dishes on the table and secondly because in the long run it is such a healthy lifestyle to adopt.Going Meatless once a week definitely bring so much difference into your diet in the long run because not only are you eating healthy but also you are breaking from the norms which I guess brings some fresh air to the usual cooking traditions we all have and abide to.

Meat Free Mondays campaign was launched by the famous Singer-Song writer Paul McCartney in 2009. It is a non-profit campaign aimed to raise awareness for the detrimental environmental impact of eating meat and also to encourage more people to go meat free for a change so as to preserve natural resources as well as improve their health in the long run.Plus going meatless once a week may reduce your risk of chronic preventable conditions like cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity. Even if it is only once a week, it can also help reduce our carbon footprint and save precious resources like fossil fuels and fresh water.So if you have always wanted to make a change then I guess it is a very good opportunity to start now along with the Meat Free Monday Campaign.Besides  I guess it saves you some pennies too!

Tadka Dal Fry is a very popular Indian lentil soup as well as the simplest of all lentils soups and dish that can exist compared to all the other Dals. My favourite of all the Dals is none other than the Dal Makhani (Buttery Lentils) for its creamy and rich texture.Amazing with Naan breads and a nice tandoori chicken on the side. Tadka Dal Fry on the other side is seasoned with a variety of spices and will leave you speechless with its depth of flavours and great deliciousness.These two are among the classics Dals that are always being served in any Indian restaurants. People always come asking for more so much they are packed with flavours. I love serving mine over a bed of Jeera Rice – Cumin Rice or even with hot Puris.Honestly I don’t think you would want any sides to go along with this one so much it is mind blowing on its own.Tadka also means tempering which is basically a technique of frying some spices and herbs in Ghee or even butter until everything starts to release an amazing aroma which is there on topped over the Dal to profound the taste.

Serves 5

Preparation time : 10 mins

Cooking time : 45 mins

Ingredients :

  • 350g of Yellow Split Peas
  • 3 Medium Sized Aubergines
  • 2 Dry Red Chillies
  • 1/2 a cup of finely chopped Onions
  • 1 cup of diced Tomatoes
  • 1tsp of Ginger/Garlic paste
  • 1 tsp of Tumeric powder
  • 2 tsp of Curry powder (Garam Masala powder)
  • 1/2 a tsp of Fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 a tsp of Cumin seeds
  • 1 pinch of Nutmeg powder
  • Bunch of Coriander leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Vegetable oil

For the Tadka (Tempering) :

  • 1 tsp of Ghee or Butter or Canola/Sesame seeds Oil for those Vegan
  • 1/2 a cup of finely chopped onions
  • 3-4 Curry leaves
  • 1 tsp of Mustard seeds
  • 2 Cloves

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Method:

  • Rinse the Dal thoroughly under tap water and place in pressure cooker with 1/2 a litr of water to slow cook for about 25 mins. If you do not have a pressure cooker then place all the Dal in a soup pot and cook until soft and tender.

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  • Then while the Dal is slow cooking, cut the Aubergines into chunks and seasoned with some salt and pepper.
  • Throw everything on a grilling pan or just put them in the oven to roast for about 10 mins or so.

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  • Then add 2 tsp of oil in a cooking vessel followed by all the dry spices mentioned above.Leave to sweat for some 5 mins and then add the diced tomatoes to the mix.

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  • When the tomatoes have reduced to a paste, add the Curry powder and give it a good stir.

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  • By now the Dal must have already been cooked to perfection. Pour in all the Dal into the spice mix and give it a comtinous stir until all is well combined.

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  • Salt accordingly and add the grilled Aubergines.
  • Leave to simmer for 10 mins more until all the Aubergines absorb the flavours of the Dal.
  • In another pan, add in all the ingredients for tempering the Dal and fry until the onions are golden brown.

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  • You will already be taken aback by the lot of aromas being released by the spices fried in the Ghee.This is when you have to turn off the gas and top the Dal with all of it.(As shown in picture below)

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I couldn’t help tasting it from time to time so much the aromas were tempting me.And here you are with the restaurant style Tadka Dal Fry! Does it not look like something you would want to dive into.I seriously had 2 servings of it,one with hot puris and another one over some white fragrant rice. Now you can make it at yours too and it is very easy as well. The plus point is that you can serve yourself as much as you want .As I have mentioned in one of my previous food post, I am a greedy Dal person.I just can’t get enough really of them.

So isn’t Meat Free Mondays all so gorgeous to adopt and besides this recipe can very well fit into the diet of those who are Vegans. You surely have to substitute the Ghee to a more nutty flavour oil like Canola Oil or even Sesame seeds oil. There are so many reasons more as to why Meatless Mondays are growing so popular with time. Couple of them are :

  • Reduce Heart Disease and Stroke
  • Limit Cancer Risk
  • Fight Diabetes
  • Curb Obesity

Hopefully you loved this another food post of mine and that you will try them at home too.But most importantly you will try to give the Meatless Mondays a go.Do not forget to share or tag me into your recipes and also I love to hear from all of you about how much you love going Meat Free from time to time.

Take care and see you soon.

Hint: Next time it’s going to be a dessert!

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