February 04, 2018
Dalcha is a north Indian stew with lentils and meats - the variations are endless.
Makes ~4 cups | 1 hour
1 cup channa dal
4 tablespoons ghee
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
10 to 15 kari leaves
2 cups chopped onions
4 chicken thighs or legs, skinless bone-in
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons ginger purée
1 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves
2 cups minced or cherry tomatoes
1 cup coconut milk
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Juice of one lemon
Rinse the channa dal 2 to 3 times in cold water. Soak in cold water for 30 to 45 minutes. Drain.
In a heavy bottom stock pot, heat up the ghee and pop the mustard seeds. Add the kari leaves and onions and sauté until light golden in color. Add chicken pieces, turmeric, black pepper & salt. Cook on high heat for 5 to 7 minutes, allowing the spices to coat the chicken.
Then add the chili powder, ginger purée and dried fenugreek - cook for another 3 to 4 minutes. Add the drained channa dal and 2 cups of water. Cover the pot and cook on low-medium heat for 30 to 40 minutes (stirring every 5 minutes) or until the lentils are tender and the chicken is cooked through. Add the tomatoes and coconut milk and continue cooking. If the lentils appear dry, add more water. Lastly, stir in the cilantro, lemon juice, and serve.
Use any lentils like masoor, moong or whole lentils in your pantry. Note that cooking times may vary.
For a vegetarian option, replace chicken with large chunks of butternut squash.
December 02, 2022