This is a Gujaratai dhal recipe for the serious dhal fans. An Indian style of fresh pasta - dhokri - is cooked in the dhal, kind of making it like a dhal pasta soup. This dhal should be liquid, not like the whole dhal you might be more used to.
1 cup (185g) toor daal (or yellow split peas)
6 cups (1.5 litres) hot water
1 ½ tablespoons ginger, minced
2 green chillies, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon turmeric
juice and zest of one lemon
1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
salt to taste
sugar to taste
1 tablespoon ghee
¼ teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
¼ teaspoon asafoetida (hing)
5-6 curry leaves
8 cashews nuts
2 star anise
1 large stick cinnamon
For the dhokri
1 cup chickpea flour (besan)
1 cup self raising flour
½ tsp salt (or to taste)
½ tsp sugar (or to taste)
½ tsp chilli powder (or to taste)
½ tsp turmeric
1 small pinch ajwain seeds (or dried thyme)
juice and zest of half a lemon
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
hot water to bind to a firm dough
2 cups frozen peas
2 tablespoons coriander, chopped
1 tablespoon grated coconut
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Boil the daal in the 6 cups water until you are able to pass it through a sieve. Pass all of this mixture through a sieve (don't drain any water away) into a large bowl/pan and set aside.
In a separate pot heat the ghee and add the mustard seeds (wait for them to pop), cumin seeds, asafoetida, curry leaves, peanuts, cashews, star anise and cinnamon.
Add the strained dhal mixture, ginger, chillies, tomato paste, turmeric, lemon juice (and zest), cinnamon powder, salt and sugar. Allow to simmer while you make the dhokri.
In a bowl mix all of the ingredients for the dhokri and bind into a firm, smooth dough.
Divide into four portions and roll out (using extra plain flour) into something resembling a thick chapati/pizza. Cut into diamond shapes (I used a pizza cutter… shortcut!).
Bring the dhal to a rapid rolling boil and one by one drop in the diamond shaped dhokris. Repeat this process until you have run out of dough- but remember to keep the daal at a constant rolling boil.
You may also need to add extra boiling water at this point as it is likely to thicken while the dhokri is cooking- this is normal.
Add the peas and boil for another 5 minutes and then taste it to make sure you can taste hot, sweet and sour. Also check there is enough salt in the daal because of the extra water you may have added when boiling the dhokri.
Add the chopped coriander and grated coconut (optional) and serve.