Comfort Food: Dal!

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Week One: Treat Yourself (and others)!

I’m actually going to stick with the daily prompt today because it’s a good one: comfort food! But I have an ulterior motive. As I mentioned during one of last year’s Sunday prompts, I am not on board with busy, on-the-go Sundays. I’m in the “be lazy and get ready for another work week” camp, for sure.

So today, I’m relying on something I actually wrote about just a few months back: dal! Dal is a definite comfort food for me. Creamy, filling, and eminently nutritious: what’s not to love? Plus, it’s beautiful.

If this picture is familiar, you’re right — I used it in my review of a fabulous cookbook, Made in India: Recipes from an Indian Family Kitchen by Meera Sodha. This chana dal was simple to make, a joy to eat, and it reheated well for leftovers. Perfection.

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A Simple Dal for a Chilly Day

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When S returned home around 9:30 this morning, he was quite tired. (Two hours of sleep will do that to ya.) We lazed around on the couch with books and the pup for a while, but eventually he retreated to the bed for a nap. Moria followed – she prefers cuddling with me most of the time, but when someone’s on the bed, all bets are off. So while she and Steven slumbered, I made a comforting, warm dal to fill us up on this cold day.

Top-down view of a small white bowl filled with a bright yellow dal, topped with a couple wilting sprigs of cilantro.

Pardon my sad cilantro…

The dal I encounter at restaurants tends to be much thinner, with more of a noticeable broth. When I cook with split yellow peas, however, my dal ends up being much thicker – and I’m fine with that. This dal had diced and sauteed onions and garlic, along with just the right amount of spices. It was surprisingly filling, too – I was more than full after that relatively small bowl. If only my cilantro hadn’t been wilt-y and old – it would’ve been a perfect topping! :)

What’s your preferred dal – thin or, um, thick?