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Indian Lentil Soup
(Tarka Dhal)


  • 250g (9oz) split red lentils
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground roasted cumin seed
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger root
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 Soup stock cube
  • 1 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. whole cumin seed
  • salt to taste
  1. Wash 250g (9oz) split red lentils well, then drain and place in a pot with 1 1/2 tsp ground roasted cumin seed , 1/2 tsp turmeric powder,1 tsp grated fresh ginger root and about 6 cups water.
  2. Stir, bring to a boil. Cover and cook slowly, stirring occasionally, for at least 2 ~ 3 hours.
  3. Meanwhile, slice the onion and stir-fry with vegetable oil until the onion caramelized but not burnt) .
  4. When the lentils are done, stir in the onions and salt to taste. Add the chopped cilantro and stir.
  5. (This step should be done just before serving) Heat the oil in a pan and add finely chopped 3 cloves garlic. Cook for a minute, stirring, until browned, then add 1 tsp whole cumin seed and cook for a few seconds longer. Pour the oil and spices into the soup, Put on the lid to trap the aromas. Mix well before serving.
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