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Curried Red Lentils (Masur Dal) with Onions
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This dish is popular throughout India and the region, even though we've arguably attributed it to South India. Some recipes call for moong dal – split mung beans - in place of the red lentils. Use moong dal if you prefer and prepare it the same way.

Serves: 4

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South Indian Vegetarian-Dairy Side Dish

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1 cup red lentils (masur dal), rinsed
3-1/2 cups water
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 tsp turmeric
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1" piece ginger, finely chopped
2 tbsp ghee (substitute unsalted butter)
1 tsp. cumin seed
1 small onion, sliced thin
1 tomato or red chili (seeded), finely chopped


  1. Bring water to boil and add lentil, salt, pepper, turmeric, ginger and garlic.
  2. Return to boil, then lower heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.
  3. Heat ghee in a skillet. Add cumin seeds and fry briefly (until aroma is released).
  4. Add onions add fry until golden brown, perhaps even a bit crispy.
  5. Drain lentils and combine with fried onions. Cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Serve garnished with tomato or red chili.

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