Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Artisan Food ~ Chestnut Lentil Soup

The days are getting longer already. Like the plants for sunshine, the appetite seems to hunger for variety. So I came up with this chestnut lentil soup idea for our meal yesterday. To my delight, it turned out to be the right kind of food at the right time.

Roasted chestnuts from Chinese grocery, and red lentils from Indian grocery are added, and the combination was simmered together with vegetables and spices. The lime juice, like a ray of sunshine, livened up the preparation. I served the chestnut lentil soup to friends and family. Chestnuts are complete strangers to few, but they seem to capture the sense of taste easily in that relaxed company. The verdict was:

“This wholesome food makes a gourmet delight to humble appetite of a dieting attitude.”

Artisan Food ~ Chestnut Lentil Soup

Artisan Food : Aim and Purpose

How it Works: After payment via Paypal, PDF file will be emailed to you to download the recipe. For any questions about the recipe or the download process, please email me at .

Chestnut Lentil Soup PDF

Artisan Food: Chestnut-Lentil Soup
Ingredients: Roasted Chestnuts, Red Lentils etc.
Skill level: A tad kitchen experience required
Labels: Vegetarian, Diet-friendly
Price: $3.00
Format: PDF

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Artisan Food : Aim and Purpose
Previously in Artisan Food : Avocado Annam


Food needs to be in the right company at the right time to feel right.
Thank you for the goodwill, and for readily embracing the Artisan food.

~ Indira

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Artisan Food,Chestnuts (Marrons),Masoor Dal (Red Lentils) (Monday February 25, 2008 at 2:16 pm- permalink)

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Dazzling Dals ~ Chard with Masoor Dal

There is nothing like a green leafy vegetable and dal combination. Otherwise difficult to like fibrous green leafy veggies magically render to mellow texture when combined and cooked with Indian dals.

Last Sunday, in addition to fresh amaranth, I also bought chard at local farmers market. 5 chard leaves for a dollar and thirty cents. Chard leaves are almost the size of young banana leaves. That big but they are delicate like spinach. They also taste similar to spinach. Makes a good meal when combined and cooked with masoor dal or toor dal.

Chard and Masoor Dal
Fresh Chard Leaf and Masoor Dal


1 cup – masoor dal (red lentils)
5 – fresh chard leaves, coarsely chopped
1 each – onion and tomato, cut to big chunks
8 to 10 – finely chopped Indian variety green chillies
Cherry fruit sized, raw tamarind
½ teaspoon each – turmeric and salt

For popu or tadka:
1 tablespoon ghee or oil
¼ teaspoon each – cumin, mustard seeds, and minced garlic
6-8 curry leaves

Take masoor dal in a pressure-cooker. Rinse with water and drain the water.
Add the chard, onion, tomato, chillies, tamarind and turmeric, along with three cups of water.
Mix and pressure-cook for about 10-15 minutes on high heat and then allow the pressure to come down naturally. Remove the lid, usually the dal will be cooked to tender. Add salt and lightly mash the ingredients. The dal is now ready for the final “Popu or tadka” touch.

In a skillet, heat the ghee until a curry leaf tossed in it sizzles. Keep the heat to medium. Add the curry leaves and garlic. Toast to pale gold color. Then, toss in cumin and mustard seeds. When seeds start to pop, add the whole thing to mashed dal. Mix and serve.

Chard-masoor dal tastes good with rice and chapati.

A Bowl of Chard-Masoor Dal with Tomato Pickled Rice, A glass of Coconut Water and a cup of Blackberries ~ Our Meal Today


Dazzling Dals ~ From My Digital Cookbook:

1. Amaranth Dal (Thotakura Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
2. Brinjal Dal (Vankaya Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
3. Fenugreek Dal (Menthi kura Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
4. Gongura Pappu (Ambadi Dal) ~ from Nandyala
5. Khatti Dal ~ Hyderabad Style
6. Lemon Cucumber Dal (Budamkaya Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
7. Mango Dal (Maamidi Kaya Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
8. Ridgegourd Dal (Beerakaya Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
9. Spinach Dal (Palakura Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
10. Spinach – Garlic Dal ~ from Kosta Region, Andhra
11. Spinach Mango Dal (Palakura Pullakura) ~ from Telengana
12. Spinach-Split Pea Dal ~ American Influence
13. Sprouted Masoor Dal ~ North India inspired
14. Tomato Dal (Tomato Pappu) ~ from Nandyala
15. Tindora Dal (Dondakaya Pappu)
~ from Nandyala

16. Moongdal Aamti with Kokum and Goda Masala ~ Maratha Influence
17. Mungdal and Ridgegourd (Beerakaya Pesara Pappu) ~ from Andhra

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Dals (Lentils & Legumes),Masoor Dal (Red Lentils) (Tuesday August 7, 2007 at 6:38 pm- permalink)
Comments (18)

The New Home of Mahanandi:

Dazzling Dals ~ Sprouted Masoor Dal

Masoor Dal Sprouts

Whole masoor dal is quick to sprout. Just few hours soak-time in water and few hours hang-time in a cotton cloth under the warm rays of the sun. That’s about it. Like the sensitive student that staunchly strives to deliver a stellar performance, masoor dal swiftly transforms itself from drab brown to dazzling shade of orange-brown within a day. Truly impressive.

This is the first time I did the sprouting thing with whole masoor and I found the process undemanding and the sprouts pleasant tasting. I remember from science classes that the sprouting process turns the starches in lentils and legumes into more digestible sugars. Whole masoor dal provides a textbook example. Prominently perceptible sweet taste, crisp texture, delicate and a delight, masoor dal sprouts are a must try for sprouts connoisseurs. I totally recommend.

Sprouted Masoor Dal Stew

This is what I’ve prepared with sprouted masoor dal. A light and easy, low-calorie stew with a taste that humbles even the contrived sprouts-cynic. That’s how I felt after the meal.


1 teaspoon peanut oil
2 each – curry leaf sprigs and garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
¼ tsp each – cumin, mustard seeds and asafetida(inguva)
1 onion, 2 tomatoes and 3 green chillies – finely chopped
2 cups sprouted masoor dal
¼ tsp each – turmeric and salt, or to taste
1 lime – juice squeezed
Few Springs of Fresh Coriander

In a big saucepan, heat the oil until a curry leaf tossed in it sizzles. Lower the heat to medium. Add the curry leaves and the garlic to cook to pale brown. Toss in cumin, mustard seeds and asafetida. When seeds start to jump, add the onions, tomatoes and chillies. saute for few minutes until they soften.

Stir in sprouted masoor dal, turmeric and salt. Add about a cup of water. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat and simmer until the dal reaches fall-apart stage, about 10-15 minutes. Add lime juice and few sprigs of fresh coriander leaves. Mix and serve warm. It tastes good on its own. No rice or chapati is needed to enjoy the sprouted masoor dal and that makes it a perfect meal for calorie-conscious.

Sprouted Masoor Dal with Farm Fresh Carrots and Cherries ~ Humble Meal on a Hot Day

Whole masoor dal (brown) and Split masoor dal (Red) can be bought at Indian groceries and also at natural food stores in bulk bins here at US.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Masoor Dal (Red Lentils),Sprouts (Molakalu),Tomato (Monday July 9, 2007 at 9:09 pm- permalink)
Comments (18)

The New Home of Mahanandi:

Series of Sprouts ~ Masoor Dal

Masoor Dal ~ Whole

Masoor Dal: Outer Brown Skins Removed and Split

Masoor Dal Sprouts

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Indian Ingredients,Masoor Dal (Red Lentils),Sprouts (Molakalu) (Sunday July 8, 2007 at 9:02 pm- permalink)
Comments (9)

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Khatti Dal ~ Hyderabad Style

Even though I am partial to golden yellow toor dal, I do think of masoor dal as the prettiest dal of all dals/lentils. Round and in reddish pink, they look like cute bindis. When cooked, they turn to tasty yellow mush. Masoor dal is rarely used in Andhra cooking and only place where you can find masoor dal recipes is Hyderabad, the capital city of Andhra. People in the city prepare a dal called “Khatti dal” with masoor dal. Here masoor dal is cooked and seasoned with tamarind juice and ginger-garlic paste. Mildly sweet, pungent and tart, khatti dal dazzles the taste buds and tastes great on its own or with rice/chapatis.

Masoor Dal, Tomato and Tamarind (squeezed and strained juice)


1 cup masoor dal
1 tomato – finely chopped
¼ cup of finely chopped green chilli
¼ tsp each – turmeric, cumin and ginger-garlic paste
½ tsp salt or to taste
1 small lime sized tamarind pieces
Soak in a cup of warm water for 15 minutes. Squeeze and using a tea filter strain the juice to remove particles.

Wash and rinse the dal first. Take masoor dal in a big pot. Add 5 cups of water along with tomato, green chilli, turmeric, cumin and ginger-garlic paste. Mix and on high heat bring to a boil.

Then reduce the heat to medium and partially cover the pot with a lid. Simmer until the dal reaches fall apart stage. Takes about 15 minutes. At this time, stir in tamarind juice and salt. Mix and cook the dal for another 5 minutes.

The cooked dal will be so soft, I usually do not mash the dal. But if you like smooth consistency, go ahead and puree the dal using an immersion blender or wood masher.

Now do the popu or tadka. In a tadka pan or in a skillet, heat about a tablespoon of ghee or oil. Add and toast one after another, half teaspoon each – minced garlic, small pieces of dried red chilli, curry leaves, cumin and mustard seeds – in the order mentioned. When mustard seeds start to jump around, add the cooked dal to the popu. Mix and serve with rice or with chapati.

Dazzling Dals: Khatti Dal with Chapatis ~ Our afternoon meal today

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Amma & Authentic Andhra,Chintapandu(Tamarind),Masoor Dal (Red Lentils) (Tuesday February 20, 2007 at 1:43 pm- permalink)
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