Another dish that makes me feel full of zen, karma, and other waves of joy. Emmita and Shoshi, avid Daalians, took the lead on the creamy, spiced lentils. I crafted the sticky, sweet tofu and garnish.

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Leftovers! Reheat in a pot with an added cup of water. Drizzle with hot sauce and top with cheddar cheese. A squirt of lemon. Marvelous.
Leftovers! Reheat in a pot with an added cup of water. Drizzle with hot sauce and top with cheddar cheese. A squirt of lemon. Marvelous.

 

Rainbow Daal, with Coconut-Barbecued Tofu

Yield: 10 servings

One of the beautiful things about Daal as I know it, is that it serves as a melting pot for any spices, legumes and other bits and ends on hand. Be creative with vegetables: add carrots and potatoes! Be creative with spices: try some garam masala! Serve with the last hunk of a loaf or a naan. It's hard to mistake this dish. Just be patient.

Ingredients

    Daal
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 medium celeriac, or two sticks celery, diced
  • 1 medium turnip , diced
  • 1 cup mung beans
  • 1 cup yellow split peas
  • 1 cup green split peas
  • 1 cup french red lentils
  • 8 cups water
  • 1/4 teaspoon clove
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper berries
  • dried crushed chili, or chili flakes, to desired heat
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon yellow curry powder
  • Tofu
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar, or honey
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • 1/2 pound firm tofu, cut into cubes

Instructions

    Daal:
  1. In a large pot, heat the sesame oil over medium-high.
  2. Add the onions and saute until translucent and browned.
  3. Add the celeriac and turnip and continue to saute.
  4. Add the beans, lentils and peas and water. Cover with a lid and turn the heat down to medium-low.
  5. In a small saucepan, toast the spices until the aroma becomes strong. Transfer to a mortar and pestle, or clean coffee grinder, and crush. Add to the pot.
  6. Cover and simmer until lentils fully absorb the water; this will take about 1 hour. Meanwhile, prepare the tofu.
  7. Tofu:
  8. Preheat oven to broil on high.
  9. Mix all of the sauces and spices together in a small bowl.
  10. Add the tofu and coat thoroughly.
  11. Transfer tofu to a glass baking dish or baking sheet.
  12. Broil for 10 minutes, until caramelized in color.
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