2 red onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
3 garlic cloves
Handful of coriander roots
2–3 slices of green cayenne chilli
1 tablespoon olive oil or ghee
2 bay leaves
½ inch cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 cup (230g) uncooked moong/mung dal
3 teaspoons sea salt flakes
1 bunch English Spinach (or 120g baby spinach leaves)
sweet paprika/ground chilli and melted ghee, to serve
- Place onion, tomato, garlic, coriander root, chilli and half a cup water in the jug of a blender. Blend until smooth.
- In a deep heavy-bottomed Dutch oven or saucepan, heat oil on medium. Add bay leaves, cinnamon and cumin seeds. Immediately when the seeds start crackling, add the onion-tomato mixture. Add the ground turmeric, cumin and coriander. Sauté on medium for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the daal base is fragrant and the onion has completely cooked off and is no longer raw.
- Wash and rinse the mung dal. Add to the daal base in the pot and mix well. Add water and salt. Bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook uncovered for approximately 20-25 minutes until the dal is fluffy and cooked.
- Wash and rinse the spinach. Cut and discard the stems. Gather and chop the leaves thinly. Add spinach to the daal and mix well. Cook for a further 3-4 minutes until spinach is wilted. Adjust seasoning. Remove from heat.
- Sprinkle with some sweet paprika or ground chilli. Optionally, add a drizzle of melted ghee. Serve hot with steamed rice.