I picked up some mixed dal at an Indian store in Jackson Heights and since the weather was about to take a turn for the worse, I decided to make mixed dal soup. Mixed dal is a mixture of different split lentils and they make delicious meals. They’re also packed with protein, and with a few greens thrown in, you’ve got a complete, filling, satisfying meal. Toasting the caraway seeds gives the soup a great, complex flavor. And it was just right on a rainy, dreary day. So here’s my version of mixed dal soup.
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, diced small
1 medium carrot, diced small
1 celery rib, finely chopped
¼ lb. sweet potato, diced small
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup mixed dal
1 tablespoon caraway seeds, toasted (optional)
1 teaspoon ground fennel seeds
1 teaspoon garlic salt
freshly ground black pepper
½ lb. bok choy (green tops only), chopped
1. Heat the oil in a medium-large pot. Add the onion, carrot, celery, sweet potato, and kosher salt and sauté 5 minutes, or until vegetables have softened and onions are translucent.
2. Add the dal, caraway seeds, fennel, garlic salt, pepper, and 4 cups water; mix well. Bring to a boil; lower the heat and cook, partially covered, until the dal are completely soft and disintegrating, about 1 to 1 ½ hours. Stir occasionally.
3. Add the bok choy and continue cooking a few more minutes until the greens have softened.
4. Taste the soup for seasoning; adjust as desired. Serve hot.
Makes about 6 servings.