2 cup yellow lentils (moong dal?)
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
3 teaspoon ground cumin
5 habaneros; chopped finely, seeds and
2 finely chopped shallots
4 finely sliced shallots
5 finely sliced cloves of garlic
1 1/2 tablespoon whole coriander seeds
2 tablespoon ghee (vegetable oil is fine; preferably flavor-removed
2 tablespoon black mustard seeds
1 can (28-oz) crushed tomatoes
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro
1/2 can coconut milk (optional)
1 black pepper
Directions: How to Cook Dal Curry With Habaneros
Adapted by Jeremy & Monette 2/18/94 from a recipe called "Mrs. K. M. Mathew's Molaghashyam" in _A Taste of India_ by Madhur Jaffrey
Stage One: Pick over the lentils, removing ones that don't look right. (There may be small rocks--remove them too.) Wash the lentils in water, then put them in a large pot with 7.5 cups of water and the turmeric. Place on high heat until boiling, then cover (leaving lid slightly ajar) and simmer on low for 45 minutes. Stir every once in a while.
Stir in the ground cumin, 1/3 of the habaneros, and the chopped shallots. Cook for 15 minutes more. Add another 1/3 of the habaneros. Cook for another 15 minutes, add a little salt, then leave on very low heat while you begin the next stage.
Stage Two: In an ungreased pan, roast the coriander seeds until the aroma changes. Grind the roasted seeds with mortar & pestle.
Heat the ghee or oil in a pan. When hot, add the mustard seeds. After they start to pop, add the rest of the habaneros, the ground coriander, the sliced shallots, and the garlic. Saute until the shallots & garlic start to brown. (Stir the dal. If it's too solid, stir in up to 1 cup of water.) Turn the heat on the pan down to low, then add the tomatoes carefully--they may spatter. Turn up the heat until the mixture is bubbling a little, stirring occasionally.
Rush to the sink to wash off the tomato bits that spattered on your shirt. Dry your shirt with a hair dryer before Monette comes over.
Stage Three: Greet Monette at the door. Stir the tomatoes and the dal. Sit on the couch and talk with Monette for a while. Remember the food cooking on the stove. Stir the tomatoes, then mix in with the dal. Add the fresh cilantro and the coconut milk. Salt to taste. Grind in black pepper to taste.
ANALYSIS: The taste was milder than expected, which may be due to the long amount of time that most of the habaneros were cooked, the fact that they were frozen habaneros (which sometimes seem to lose heat in the freezer), or the fact that given the absence of placentas & seeds there just weren't enough of them. Even so, the habanero flavor (as opposed to the habanero burn) did come through. THE RECIPE AS A CYCLE OF HAIKU . Two cups of lentils Rinse them and take out the rocks And bad lentils too . In with the lentils Pour seven and a half cups Of cold tap water . Add just a little Bit of tu [transmission interrupted] "jeremy j. b. nguyen"
From the Chile-Heads recipe list. Downloaded from Glen's MM Recipe Archive, http://www.erols.com/hosey.
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