April 26, 2018

Chickpea Dhal

The whole kneeding and rolling out bread on a floured surface is beyond a lot of people’s convenience threshold. Making flatbread however is a core life skill which shows other people that you are a grounded, common sense, practical person, who is capable and can be trusted in any circumstance. The basic technique can also be adapted to any style of flat bread for any type of meal. Chuck in some olives or herbs and you have Mediterranean flatbread, you get the idea.

Ingredients

  • Red lentils
  • Onion
  • Ginger
  • Garlic
  • Coriander powder or garam massala or curry powder
  • Fresh red chilli
  • A handful of fresh coriander
  • A couple of ripe tomatoes

For the flatbread:

  1. A cupful of bread flour
  2. A teaspoon of baking powder ( if you are using pure bicarbonate of soda, you will need to add an acidic ingredient like milk or yoghurt )
  3. A pinch of salt
  4. A couple of gluggs of warm water
  5. Some black onion, crushed fennel or other seeds
  6. Mix the ingredients in a bowl, turn out onto a flowered surface and kneed for 5 minutes until the dough is elastic, leave to rise while you make the dhal

Instructions

  1. Cook the lentils according to the packet instructions, drain an set aside.
  2. Meanwhile fry the onion, garlic ginger and chilli until soft.
  3. Add the spices and fry for a further couple of minutes, you might need to add a splash of water to stop the spices sticking.
  4. Combine the lentils and onion mix and add a can of drained chickpeas.
  5. Add the chopped tomatoes.
  6. Season to taste. If it needs more heat, add some more chopped fresh chilli. If it’s too spicy add some coconut milk.
  7. Cut the flatbread dough into chunks pat or roll out flat to a thickness of two to three millimetres. Heat some vegetable oil in a large frying pan and fry the bread for two to three minutes each side. Serve with the warmed dhal some fresh coriander and a sprinkling of Nigella or black onion seeds.

Notes:

There is a a good explanation here of the difference between baking soda, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda.

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