'Vegan Richa's Indian Kitchen' Recipe, Review + Cookbook Giveaway!
As a blogger myself, I often peruse other people's blogs to see what they're up to, what recipes they're creating and how some of my best virtual friends are doing. And Richa's blog always catches my attention! Between her vegan-ized traditional Indian recipes and her creative non-indian recipes (Sriracha BBQ Tofu Pizza with Homemade Pepper Jack on Spelt Crust- YES PLEASE!), she constantly wows us with her ingenious flavor combinations. Plus, her website is packed with recipes- anything you could ever want! From 'game day' snacks to burgers in all flavors and sizes, Richa has mastered it all. She presents her recipes in an easy-to-read style and always suggests other recipes you might like, as well.
This cookbook is a real game-changer. Her dishes make eating out seem so blasé- why BUY expensive Indian food when you can make it yourself?! It has made a whole new culture of food available to vegans, and Richa has managed to cut a lot of sugar and fat out the recipes too, so they're even a bit healthier than what you may get if you're eating out. We live very near Little India in Artesia/ Cerritos, but often avoid eating out there because the menus are in traditional Indian and we simply don't know what some of them are or what the ingredients are. Now we can save money and have date nights right at our house, cooking our own delicious, traditional Indian dishes. Richa has made Indian food incredibly accessible!
The recipe we chose to share with you is for a simple dal (lentil) dish. It was easy to throw together and tasted GOURMET! And don't be deterred by the number of ingredients. This dish whips up easily and tasted great with a side of rice. I reheated my leftovers and ate them for two days- they were SO good! Like restaurant-quality good. I feel like Richa's cookbook has opened a whole new world of cooking to me, teaching me to make dishes I would've been hesitant to even order at takeout. Do yourself a serious favor and get this cookbook- or enter our giveaway below for a chance to win a FREE copy!
Before I give you the (delicious) recipe, a note from Richa herself:
"If you want to impress someone with a dal, make it this one. Don't be afraid of the number of spices- it is quite simple to make. The spices and garlic are blended to a paste and fried in the oil. A hot sauce (chiles, garlic + vinegar) in the tadka is another secret to getting the right flavor profile. Serve this as part of a meal, or with rice or naan or other flatbread."
Masala Lentils (Sabut Masoor)
3/4 cup brown lentils, washed and drained (we used green lentils 'cause it's what we already had!)
2 cups water
2-3 teaspoon safflower or other neutral oil
1/2 cup finely chopped red or white onion
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek leaves or 1/8 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 teaspoon sweet or hot paprika
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1½ tablespoon sriracha or other hot sauce, to taste
2 tablespoons water
1½ cup chopped tomato
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, for garnish
1 tablespoon vegan butter (optional)
1. Combine the lentils with 2 cups of water in a saucepan. Partially cover and cook over medium heat until the lentils are tender, 25-30 minutes.
2. While the lentils are cooking, make the tempering. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until golden brown, 5-6 minutes.
3. In a blender, combine the garlic, cumin, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, fenugreek, paprika, nutmeg, black pepper, sriracha, and 2 tablespoons of water. Blend to combine well. Add this paste to he onions in the skillet. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and salt, and cook until the tomatoes are tender, about 8 minutes. Mash the larger tomato pieces.
4. Add the tempering to the lentils. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer for another 5 minutes. Taste and adjust salt and spice. Garnish with cilantro and vegan butter, if using and serve hot. Makes 4 servings.
You made it to the giveaway! Don't wanna wait to win a copy? We can't blame you! You can buy a copy here from Amazon and should absolutely check out her blog, which is regularly updated with some beautifully photographed recipes that you'll definitely wanna whip up in your own kitchen. Thanks again to Richa for writing this amazing book and letting us review it for her AND give away a copy. She rocks! Entries open to US only. Sorry, mates. Contest runs through 5/25/15. Good luck!