Thursday, March 15, 2007

chana dal

I've been fascinated by chana dal, ever since Dan gave me a big bagful when he moved out of his apartment, and have been looking for ways to use these quick-cooking baby split chickpeas. (Chana dal = tasty hummus, just so you all know!) I had been wanting to make Indian food for a while now, and decided to adapt and vegetize a recipe for "Balti Butter Chicken" that I had made years ago. Curried chana dal, here I come!
Curry never photographs well, does it? Anyhow, I'd call this meal pretty tasty -- not spectacular, but a valiant effort, and absolutely edible. The recipe needs more tweaking, yet -- how to keep the richness I'm looking for, without an entire stick of butter . . . sheesh. I also used fat-free plain yogurt, since I couldn't find low-fat plain yogurt in the little cups, which was a mistake -- I forget that fat-free dairy has a tendency to curdle when heated. (It's been a while since I've really cooked with dairy!) Indian food sure is tricky! On the side is a brown basmati rice pilaf with almonds and raisins, seasoned with butter (again, not much -- and I think this time the reduction was a good thing!), cardamom, black pepper, and bay. In the end, I'll have to keep working on this one . . . and someone can test it for the cookbook, once I get it the way I like it!


KleoPatra said...

i love all the ingredients there, Catherine. I think it photographed VERY very well, by the way. Lookin' really really good there!

I am getting a head rush just THINKING about using a whole stick of butter for anything! YIKES!! :o)

Catherine Weber said...

Kleo, yeah, that amount of butter is WAY too much, but that's what the original recipe called for! I cut the recipe in half, and then cut the butter down to one tablespoon, and that didn't seem to be quite enough -- I think with the change of omitting the chicken, (obviously!), something else will have to be done. :)

madeinalaska said...

looks good to me.. I often use vegan sour cream for a substitute for plain yogurt.. as we can't get plain yogurt in our neck of the woods. It seems to work really well especially in Indian food.

bazu said...

one word: yum!

funwithyourfood said...

I think that is a pretty good curry photograph :)

Crystal said...

Ha - 1 stick of butter! I'd also find a way to cut that down.

Food looks great - love the pilaf too.


PS - My schedule has been crazy. Once I get some of these events out of the way, it should be smooth sailing.

Michelle said...

oooh... we'd love to test anything curry-ish! we'd have to veganize it for me and the kids, but hubby will eat it with dairy.

we live and breathe curry :)

Anonymous said...

i did like how it looks, yum!