This is a super simple dish, found across India – it’s straightforward to prepare at home, but make sure you get the amount of water just right, so the rice and lentils are well cooked but not too sticky. This recipe will serve 4.
100g red split lentils
2 tablespoons of ghee (or melted virgin coconut oil)
5 fresh curry leaves
1 tablespoon of peeled ginger, finely chopped
1 teaspoon of ground fennel seeds
1 small green chili, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
250g basmati rice
1 small onion, finely chopped
Salt to taste
- Cover lentils with water in a small bowl and leave to soak for 30 minutes before draining. Rinse the rice and drain.
- Heat the ghee in a large pan and after around 5 minutes, add the turmeric and toast until it darkens a little – this normally takes less than 30 seconds. Then add curry leaves, ginger and chopped chili and cook for 1 minute.
- Add the drained lentils and rice – cook, stirring, until nearly drry for a couple of minutes.
- Add your fennel seeds, salt and the water. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and skim off any foam that has formed on the surface, then simmer for around 40 minutes until the rice and lentils are tender.