2 cups uncooked Masoor Lentils (available in Indian stores)
3-4 cups of water
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 cinnamon stick
Notes: Do not add salt for better cooking. This will yield about 4 cups cooked lentils.
1 medium onion chopped
1 red bell pepper or 2-3 sweet red chilies sliced
1 handful of Thai basil leaves (regular basil can be substituted)
1 cup coconut milk
1 heaping Tbs of ginger-garlic-paste or 2 cloves of garlic grated and 1 inch of ginger grated
1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
1/2 tsp of mustard seeds
1/2 tsp of red chili flakes (or to taste)
2-3 Tbs of fish sauce
Step 1: Cook your lentils
Wash your lentils well in cold running water. You want the water to run clear from the lentil residue. Then put the lentils in a large pan like a deep saute pan (I find the lentils do not boil over onto the stove if you use a wide pan). Add the water, turmeric and cinnamon stick. Boil on medium high heat for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are cooked. The lentils will be soft and easily crushed by your fingers when done. Once cooked set aside.
Step 2: Make the Thai Tempering-
Heat a large pan with 1 Tbs of canola oil. First add your chopped onions and saute for 2-3 minutes. Then add your spices (cumin seeds, mustard seeds and red chili flakes). Saute for another minute.
Then add the ginger, garlic and red chilies or peppers. Fry for another 2-3 minutes.
Next add your cleaned Thai Basil leaves and Fish Sauce. Now the fish sauce is the salt in the dish. Start with 2Tbs and add more as needed. I ended up using 3 full Tbs.
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