Monday, June 27, 2016

Lasuni Chilkewala masoor palak ( garlic flavored orange lentil and spinach stew ) ; Meatless Monday

Last Thursday evening I was running several errands. Well, most evenings I have errands to run, but this particular day was more hectic than the others. The reason for this was that I had to attend the PTA meeting but before an hour before that, I had to meet-up with the out-going treasurer for transfer of information. You see, was kind of cuckolded into the position of treasurer for the PTA. Thursday also happens to be my day for grocery shopping. In midst of all this, I had nothing for dinner. When I say nothing, I mean nothing cooked!! When I got home from worked, I quickly cooked the rice and the lentils in the pressure cooker and then left for the meetings. When I came back home, I was too tired to make anything. I wanted to cook spinach and lentils separately. I decided to make them together. The traditional dal-palak ( lentil-spinach) stew/soup is made using split pigeon peas. I decided to combine whole orange lentil and spinach and make the stew but in a quick fashion. I washed, chopped and cooked the spinach along with one chopped tomato & one onion. I added the cooked lentils to the spinach with some salt and asofoetida. I then tempered this mixture with sautéed garlic, red chilli and garam masala powder. Delicious chili Garlic spinach-lentil stew was ready! My husband went for seconds!!

Sometimes, the best recipes are those that you come up with, either accidentally or when in a hurry! Do give it a try. It is nutritious and delicious!

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 20 mins

Total time: 30 mins

Servings: 2-3


Whole orange lentil: 1/2 cup
Water: 1 & 1/2 cups + 1/2 cup
Green chillies: 1,slit( can be adjusted as per individual spice preference)
Spinach: 1 & 1/2cups, chopped
Onion: 1, small, chopped
Tomato: 1 small, chopped
Garlic: 5-6 cloves, chopped fine
Coconut oil: 1 tsp ( any cooking oil can be used).
Red chilli powder: 1/2 tsp ( can be adjusted as per individual spice preference.
Asofoetida: a pinch if using powder, 1/4 tsp if using solution.
Garam masala: 1/4 tsp ( optional)
Salt: as per taste.


Rinse the whole orange lentil  and add it to a pot with 1 and 1/2 cups water. 
Cook until tender ( around 20 minutes on stove-top, 10 minutes if cooked in pressure cooker). Turn off the flame and keep aside.

Separately cook the spinach with 1/2 cup water, chopped onion, tomato and salt for 6-8 minutes. Turn off the flame. 

Add the cooked lentils and Asofoetida to this and mix well.

In a small frying pan/sauté pan or kadai, heat coconut oil on medium heat. 
Add the chopped garlic cloves. Sauté until garlic is fragrant. 
Add the chilli powder and garam masala powder. Turn off the flame( be careful not to burn the chilli powder)!! 

Add this to the lentils. 

Serve hot with rice/roti/bread. 


I am bringing this comfort dish to Throwback Thursday#45, Fiesta Friday#126  and Saucy Saturdays#51

Cooking made easy:

The cook time can be even lower if you cook the lentils and spinach in the same pot. If using the pressure cooker, you can add to the pot the lentils, spinach, onion and tomato together and cook it.  If using the stove top, you can cook the lentils with the tomatoes and the onions and add the spinach towards the end.

The consistency and taste will vary a little depending on the cooking method selected. If cooked in the pressure cooker, it will be more soupy in consistent while the stove-top will give you a more stew-like consistency.

Tip for healthy living:

Making wholesome soups/stews like this not only makes dinner easy but also provides for a complete meal!

Food for thought:

Don't give up what you want most, for what you want now. Unknown.

Please do share your thoughts. Your opinion matters!

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