Thursday, February 26, 2015

Simple Red Lentils / Musurir Dal Makha

Once I read a story about a boy. The boy wanted to read a book. It was a suspense thriller and he dreamed of reading it. That particular book was chart topper at that time. But he did not have sufficient money to buy that. The only rich boy in his class bought it and showed it off relentlessly, without allowing anyone to even touch it. With time the boy grew up and eventually forgot about the book. Then one day, roaming in the market of old books, he caught a glance of that book of his childhood dream. Old, ragged and torn from sides....the book awakened his old and forgotten wish. He bought that book and took it home. Made a place for this book in his precious library. He looked at it, touched it, caressed its hardcover and even breathed its smell...but couldn't make himself read the book. His only fear was that...his sky high expectations might be greater than the simple joy of reading the book....that...that it might kill his love for the book, which he had preserved so far with great care.

how to make bengali style red lentils

When I reached India I did whatever I had planned to do. And  I had the exact same feeling like the above story. I realized my expectation have just got bigger than the satisfaction of doing the job. The things I used to do on a daily basis, the places that I knew like the back of my palm and the foods, which have fulfilled my hunger so many times....are just the same. But I thought of them so much in the last year, that when I actually reached the place and ate the food...I thought it was better the last time I was here. For a killed my enthusiasm...but it taught me a great lesson. It taught me to move on. I realized that instead of lamenting over them I should search for my happiness in my surroundings and accept the fact that these things are no longer a part of my daily life. Like a candle...blown up in the wind...for the last one year I was just smelling the charred smell...and didn't even notice when the smell even had faded out.

how to make bengali style red lentils

This simple red lentils is a classic Bengali comfort food. This is my rescuer in distress. Simple ingredients, simple food..makes an exceptional lunch. This is how my mother used to prepare this...and with a spoonful ghee, nothing can beat the comfort level of this dish.

Simple Red Lentils / Musurir Dal Makha
Serve 2

how to make bengali style red lentils

  • 1/2 cup red lentils
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1/2 onion - chopped
  • 1/2 tomato - chopped
  • 1 green chili - chopped
  • 2 tsp mustard oil
  • salt
  • Wash the lentils in water, until clear water runs out from it.
  • Then soak the lentils in water for 10-12 minutes.
  • After that, drain the water and put the lentils in a pressure cooker with 2 cups of water and salt. You can do this in any saucepan too, but that will taken much longer time.
  • Cook the lentils on pressure until it blows 2-3 whistles.
  • Let the steam pass out and then uncover the cooker. Add the mustard oil.
  • Put the uncovered cooker again on medium flame and cook to thicken the cooked lentils. Cook until the thickness reaches your desired consistency.
  • When cooked, transfer the cooked lentils in a bowl.
  • Add the chopped onion, tomato and green chilies. If you have coriander leaves, add them too.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  • Serve with steamed hot rice, some mashed potatoes and a dollop of ghee.


  1. Great recipe n above all great insight .. some thing we all must have felt at some point of time..

  2. Great recipe n above all great insight .. some thing we all must have felt at some point of time..