Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Black bean dal

Since most of the nation is frozen, I was thinking what could be the best meal to eat in this cold weather. Immediately, I was craving a steaming bowl of dal with chappatis or naan.  A bowl of spicy creamy dal is the best comfort food to eat, especially during this time of the year. Lentils and beans have been a part of Indian diet since prehistoric times. Beans are the primary source of protein for many vegetarian Indians and are eaten for at least one meal of the day.  They are an excellent source of folate, iron and potassium and not to mention they are full of fiber. 
This black bean dal is very easy to prepare with Trader Joe's pantry staples. Here, I used canned black beans. If you prefer, by all means, soak a cup of black beans overnight and cook until tender and proceed with the recipe. This is a very simple and tasty dal that you will be making over and over again. Enjoy!

Serves 2 -4

  • 2 15 oz cans black beans
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  1. Drain and rinse the black beans. Mash the beans with a potato masher or with the back of the spoon.
  2. In a saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot , add the diced onions and fry until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic, cumin powder, and cayenne and fry for 1 minutes.
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until tomatoes are soft and some of the moisture has evaporated. Add salt and mashed beans and cook for 3 - 5 minutes.
  4. Add 1 cup of water and cook until dal is creamy. Adjust the seasoning.
  5. Serve with whole wheat tortillas or Malabari parathas from Trader Joe's.
* The recipe is adopted from my book, Trader Joe's Simply Indian.

For more memorable centerpieces, tablescapes, and recipes (including vegetarian, gluten free and vegan recipes), please check out my books, Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen and Trader Joe's Simply Indian at my website komalinunna.com.

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  1. It sounds very good and healthy! I will give a try this week. Thank you, Komali !

  2. This looks amazing. Think I will make it tomorrow after I soak some beans.

  3. I never ever thought of making Dhal from Black Beans. I love this recipe and will be making it very very soon. Thanks for sharing and I will be featuring it on my blog this week.

    Ivy & Elephants