Red Lentil Dal
Makes approximately 6 to 8 servings
2 cups water
1 1/2 cups red lentils, rinsed and picked over for debris
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 can (28 ounces) whole tomatoes
1 green serrano chile, seeded and minced
3-inch piece gresh ginger, peeled and minced
5 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 rounded teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, plus additional as needed
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
fresh cilantro, for garnish
1. Combine the water, drained lentils,onion, tomatoes, chile, ginger, and garlic in a 4-quart saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, then lower the heat to a simmer and cook until the lentils are tender, approximately 25 to 35 minutes. Whisk the cooked lentils to break them down slightly. This gives the soup a nice texture and also helps the lentils to release some of their natural starch, which thickens the soup.
2. Warm the canola oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. When the oil starts to shimmer, add the cumin, turmeric, paprika, and salt and let the spices cook for 30 seconds until they become fragrant. Make sure to monitor the spices carefully so that they do not burn.
3. Pour the seasoned oil over the cooked lentils and stir to combine, then stir in the fresh squeezed lime juice. Add additional salt, to taste. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with cilantro.