3 large onions, sliced
4 tblsp. butter, or Clarified butter
6 chili peppers, crushed into a paste, or 2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 2-inch piece of fresh ginger
10 cloves garlic
½ cup dry lentils, pre-soaked
½ lb fresh green peas, shelled
½ lb carrots, chopped
½ lb green beans, chopped
3 large tomatoes, chopped
6 whole cloves
1 4-inch stick of cinnamon
6 cardamom pods, crushed
1 tsp. turmeric
3 sprigs of fresh mint, or ½ tsp. dried mint leaves, pounded
2 cups long-grain white rice (Basmati is a good choice), uncooked
6 large potatoes, chopped into large chunks
1 - 2 tsp. salt
In a large, heavy skillet or stew pot, fry the onions in butter until they are golden brown. With a slotted spoon, remove about 1/3 of the slices and set aside. Add to the pot the ginger, garlic and chili paste, and fry for 5 or 6 minutes, stirring constantly. Then add the lentils, green peas, carrots and green beans. Reduce heat and cook for 15 minutes, adding more butter, or a bit of oil, if necessary.
Add tomatoes, spices and mint, and stir for 5 minutes. Then pour in about a cup of hot water, cover, and simmer until vegetables are about half cooked. Add rice, potatoes, salt, and another 4 - 5 cups of hot water (use the lesser amount if your vegetables have created quite a bit of liquid). Cover again, and cook for another 20 - 30 minutes until rice is done and water is absorbed.
To serve, garnish with the reserved onion slices, and pass around a bowl of yogurt as a sauce.
Serves 4 - 6.
country : South Africa
course : vegetarian dish
source : The Africa News Cookbook : African Cooking for Western Kitchens / edited by Tami Hultman