Udupi-Style Risotto with Dal

Just posting this recipe for inclusion in the winter 2012 cleanse – if I make it again, I’ll be sure to take some pictures!  This dish comes from a book called The Dance of Spices, which I haven’t yet gotten a chance to fully explore.  It’s packed with vegetables and spices, and the heat can be adjusted to your personal preference.  This recipe makes a lot (it’s hard to scale down recipes to use half of vegetables like eggplants and peppers without a lot of food going to waste), so stick some in the freezer for a lazy night.

Udupi-Style Risotto with Dal

Adapted slightly from The Dance of Spices.  Serves 6.

  • 1 c. Arborio rice
  • 1/2 c. yellow split peas
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 TBS canola oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  • 2 TBS chopped cilantro leaves and stems
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium Yukon gold potato, washed and cubed
  • 1/2 a large eggplant or 1 small Japanese eggplant, diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 small head of broccoli, cut in 1-inch pieces (about 3/4 c.)
  • 2 TBS tamarind concentrate, dissolved in 1/2 c. water
  • 1 recipe rasam powder, recipe below
  • 2 TBS butter
  1. Combine rice and split peas in a bowl and cover with cold water.  Soak for 30 minutes, then drain and rinse twice.  In a large saucepan, combine rice, split peas, 3 1/2 c. water, and 1/2 tsp salt and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until split peas are tender, about 30 minutes.  Turn off heat and let stand, covered.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add mustard seeds and asafetida, and cook for about 1 minute, then add cilantro, turmeric, onion, potato, eggplant, carrots, bell pepper, and broccoi, and cook, stirring for 3-5 minutes.  Add dissolved tamarind liquid.  If needed, add more water to almost cover veggies, then cover pan, and cook over medium heat until potato is tender, about 8-10 minutes.  When potato is tender, season with salt and add the huli anna powder as well as 1 c. water, stir to combine then pour over rice and split pea mixture.  Stir to combine, then cook over medium heat for about 2 minutes, to allow the water to be absorbed.  Mix in 2 TBS of butter, and serve hot.

Rasam Powder

Recipe adapted from The Dance of Spices.

  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 3 TBS coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 10 fresh kari leaves
  • 1 small, hot dried chile (such as a Thai chile), stemmed and broken into rough pieces
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  1. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.  Add coriander, cumin, peppercorns, fenugreek, kari leaves, and chile pieces.  Toast, stirring constantly, until the seeds are beginning to brown and the leaves are beginning to crisp, about 5 minutes.  Add asafetida and cook for 1 additional minute.  Transfer mixture to a mortar and pestle (or electric spice/coffee grinder) and pound or grind to a powder.

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