Mushoor Daaler Boda’r Dalna (Masoor/Red Lentil Fritters in a spicy curry)

Dear Cousins!

Since you guys are busy with other things, lemme carry on my writing.  This is a dish that I learnt from Ma. Now one must note that she doesn’t like cooking, yet every time she cooks, she does create wonders falsifying the notion that only people who love to cook can cook good food!! Usually, she just throws in this and throws in that and !!VOILA!! a splendid dish emerges…one can rightly call her a good careless cook! She tells everyone that she can’t cook, apparently when compared to me, but Ma, you are my true inspiration to cook.  From childhood I saw you create amazing things out of nothing or with limited things…Baba used to say, ‘Anyone can cook well with a lot of oil, spices and expensive ingredients; but your mother cooks well even with limited resources, that’s why she is a good cook!’  I second my Dad in this….you rightly exemplify the funda of jugaad (we Indians are so adept in jugaad, that there is even a wiki page on it!!).  You were the one who taught us how to bake a Cake in a pressure cooker; grill an awesome Pizza on a pan, where even the dough is homemade without yeast; make a Egg & Crumbed Bread pizza (will surely write about that in another post); the gorgeous but delicate steamed Caramel Pudding; Mutton Rezala; 1/2 an hour Chicken Biryani; Fish Biryani and the entire fare of Bengali foods….shukto (a veggie dish with a bitter taste) to payesh (rice cooked in a sweetned milk thats been thickened through slow cooking)…I guess this is why I too have learned the art of using jugaad ingredients & less oil!! My mother – my inspiration, my strength and my friend!! This post is dedicated to you, Ma…

Mushoor daale'r Boda'r Dalna

Mushoor daale’r Boda’r Dalna

Mushoor Daaler Boda’r Dalna

1 cup Red Lentils (Masoor Daal) makes about 20-25 fritters

3 large cloves of Garlic

1 large onion

2 inch Ginger piece

1-2 tomatoes

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 whole dry red chili

1 tsp Turmeric

Green chili and salt to taste

Oil to fry

Wash the lentils well and soak them in 2 cups of water for 3-4 hours (if whole then may take longer..I used split which took about 3 hours to look like

soaked Red lentils/Masoor with garlic

soaked Red lentils/Masoor with garlic

Grind the lentil, 1-2 green chillis and a large clove of garlic into a semi-fine paste (I like to bite into a grainy texture, but if anyone prefers a soft texture, please go ahead and grind it into a fine paste).  Add minimal amount of water if the lentils are hard to grind..but try and keep the water level very low or else it would be difficult to fry them.  When you have the paste, add about 1 tsp salt, 2 tsp sugar and mix well. You can taste a pinch of the mixture to check the seasoning. I like it hot and sweet and very garlicy 😀

Beauty tip: A paste made of any lentils makes a great body/facial scrub…a paste made of cooked urad daal or the skin removed black lentil + fenugreek seeds is a great hair wash and conditioner that helps hair growth….it can be a bit difficult to get it out of the hair, but its worth the effort I am told 🙂

In a good non-stick pan, take about 2 tbsps of oil and make flat-round fritters.  If you deep fry this, it would not work and the fritters would absorb a lots of oil. So it is best if you add oil little by little as you go along. Once done on both sides, these fritters look more like toasted than fried.  Set aside.  For the curry, grind together onion, tomato, ginger and remaining garlic into a fine paste.

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Take another 2-3 tbsps of oil in a pan and add the cumin seeds and dry red chilli.  When these start turning brown, add the onion paste, the turmeric and fry till oil & the masala/paste separates.  Throw in the fritters, about 2 cups water and the seasoning according to taste and let it cook on medium heat for 10 mins.  By this time the fritters soften a little as they have absorbed the curry.  Let the gravy thicken if you like the ‘dalna’ dry; but I suggest you keep the water coz in any case the fritters will soak up the extra liquid. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve hot with rice!!

Didi, have you ever made this? If not, then do try it out and call Ma…she would love to hear about it 🙂

Lots of love and hugs,

Dakhina

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2 comments on “Mushoor Daaler Boda’r Dalna (Masoor/Red Lentil Fritters in a spicy curry)

  1. chandni says:

    mothers are so indispensable at times, loved your dedication. this recipe is new for me, will surely try someday 🙂

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