To make ½ curry of the spice mix (you can used for dal or any curry, meat or veg – super versatile!)
15 x dried red chillies – the long ones (not Bird’s Eye!)
1 cinnamon stick
¼ cup coriander seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 Tbsp fennel seeds
Dry roast all the above spices in a fry pan. Move them around in the pan and don’t let them burn, then blitz or grind into a fine powder.
250g yellow moong dal
1 tsp turmeric
Salt to taste
200g Coconut milk (optional)
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 tsp black mustard seeds
10-15 curry leaves (fresh best but dried perfectly fine too)
Thoroughly rinse the dal. Add the water and cook until the dal splits and begins to get mushy – around 20 mins. Add more water if needed – the cooked dal should be a porridge-like consistency.
Add the oil and mustard seeds to a separate frying pan. Wait until you hear all of the mustard seeds have popped before turning the heat off and adding the curry leaves, then 2 tsp of the spice mix, along with the turmeric. Add this mixture to the cooked dal and stir to combine. Add coconut milk if you prefer a creamier consistency and season with salt to taste.