Did someone say Autumn comfort food? Well, I have exactly what you’re looking for with this dreamy Butternut Squash Tadka Dal <3
You might have noticed earlier this week a shared with you a recipes for a super simple 5 Minute Coriander Chutney. Well that little chutney was MADE for this dal. In the literal sense and the ‘match-made-in-heaven’ sense too. This dal is wonderfully creamy and comforting, while the chutney has a little bit of sweet and sour to balance the whole thing out. Like I said, an absolute dreeaaaaam.
In the last few weeks I’ve started my Human Nutrition course at uni and OH MY GOSH. My brain hurts. Who know biochemistry could be physically painful ey? But I’m loving it so much. It’s really exciting taking steps towards goals and new career paths. And I’m really excited to being sharing some of the things I’m learning with you as soon as my brain is less like soup…
What is Tadka?
Tadka is the simple but powerful method of frying spices in oil or ghee. The spices both flavour the oil they are cooked in and release their own essential oils making them more aromatic and flavorful. Both the spices and oil can then be the base of a dish, such as a curry, or they can be added to a dish towards the end. Exactly like in this dal.
To help make the tadka for this recipe I use my Bosch Food Processor and it’s mini chopper which is absolutely fantastic when it comes to making curry pastes and chopping veggies.
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This creamy vegan dal is full of warming spices, red lentils and butternut squash. The perfect Autumn comfort food!
For the Dal
- 250g red lentils
- 1/2 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 1L water
- Salt to taste
For the Tadka
- 1 onion
- 3 tomatoes
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 inch piece of ginger
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 tbsp oil or ghee
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 5 Minute Coriander Chutney
- Roti or Chapati
- Add the lentils, butternut squash and water to a large saucepan and put over a medium heat. Bring to the boil and skim any ‘scum’ off the top. Reduce to a simmer for 20-30 minutes until the lentils are tender, and beginning to break apart.
For the Tadka
- Using a food processor or mini chopper (I use Bosch….) pulse the onion, tomatoes, tomato puree, garlic and ginger until a coarse paste forms. Alternatively finely chop the onion and tomatoes and mince or grate the ginger and garlic.
- Heat a saucepan over a medium heat with a tablespoon of oil or ghee. Add the cumin seeds and mustard seeds and allow them to sizzle for 1 minute, stirring regularly. Keep a close eye so they don’t burn. Then add the ground coriander and turmeric and stir for 30 seconds before adding the onion, tomato, garlic and ginger paste. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring regularly, until most of the water has evaporated. Then add the garam masala.
To put it together
- When the lentils and squash are cooked through, add your tadka mixture, stirring to incorporate. Leave to cook for a further 5 minutes. Taste and season with salt.
- The dal should have a porridge/soup like consistency. Add more water if it feels too dry.
- Serve with 5 Minute Coriander Chutney and warm roti. Enjoy!
Keywords: Vegan Dal, Dal Recipe, Daal Recipe, Dahl Recipe, Tadka, Tarka