You will need:
3 cups Water
1 tbsp minced Ginger
1 – 1 ½ tsp Salt
½ tsp Sugar
1 tbsp Oil
1 tbsp minced Garlic
2 tbsp chopped Fresh Cilantro
Rinse lentils and place in a deep pot. Add 3 cups of water, ginger and the contents of the Bag 1 (turmeric and asafetida). Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium. Simmer until lentils are tender, stirring occasionally. This will take 15-20 minutes depending on desired consistency. When ready, stir in salt and sugar.
In a small frying pan over high heat, warm the oil. When smoking hot, remove pan from heat and add contents of Bag 2 (red chili* and panch phoran).
Stir constantly until seeds crackle and turn a shade darker, about 10 seconds. Reduce heat, return pan to stove. Add garlic. Stirring constantly, cook until it turns light golden, about 1 minute. Pour contents of the pan over the lentils. Add the cilantro and mix thoroughly. Check and correct the seasonings.
*Crack open red chili for more intense heat.
Makes 8-10 half-cup servings.
Thin dal can be enjoyed like soup or ladled over rice. Thick dal can be scooped up with warm flatbread, naan or pita crisps.