I know traditional curry is a culturally sentimental dish. Here she is, Americanizing it by adding dumplings.It's a guilty pleasure. My best friends demand this all of the time, and I'm always more than happy to make it for them. It has created a lot of bonding with us, so it's a part of me, and that is the purpose of food, and sharing a part of myself, right? Yea, I bastardized it didn't I? At least I admit it!
Vidallia Onion: small diced
Red Bell Pepper: small diced
Coconut Oil: Coconut oil is traditionally used in Western Indian cuisine, but if you can't find it use what you'd like.
Vegetable Stock: Homemade preferred. Store bought is great, just remember, STOCK not BROTH (broth is seasoned with salt) You want to be in control of your salt seasoning! ;)
Coconut Milk: I used So Delicious because it isn't overly sweet, and isn't too rich like the canned variety which contains a lot sodium.
Garam Masala: Garam Masala is a mixture of spices used in Indian cuisine. Many families have their own blends. Take time to smell your spices and see what you'd like. This is what I use:
Tumeric (is not the same thing as commercial curry powder)
Other spices you can use: Cumin, Star Anise, Nutmeg, Fennel Seed, Feungreek (Methi)...
What about Curry Powder? Curry Powder is premixed and not traditionally used.
My personal preference is my own Garam Masala, but feel free to use just curry powder and a few other spices you feel comfortable with. Remember that recipes are guidelines
Be creative. Use what you like. Use what you distinctively taste in favorite curries of yours.
What is best? Pre powdered or whole spices? Here are a few options:
1.Toast whole spices on low heat, until you smell them. Blend them in a coffee grinder (preferred method). Fresh spices taste completely different. Grate fresh nutmeg. Don't toast it!
2. Combine pre powdered spices (shelf life is 6 months. Spices lose potency & become stale)
3. Buy a garam masala blend at a gourmet food store!
1.Medium heat, warm up oil
2.Add onions & mildly season with salt (always season in layers so each ingredient is highlighted)
3.When translucent, add bell pepper & mildly season with salt
4.Add your lentils along with spices. This way your spices are incorporated in your broth properly, and you aren't left with floating dust by adding in after liquid has been added.
5.When lentils have absorbed oil and spices thoroughly, add vegetable stock
6.Bring to a boil for about 5 minutes
7.Turn heat down to a low/medium low
8.Add warm coconut milk (do not add coconut milk in when stock is boiling or cold milk to warm stock. your milk will separate and turn into flakes)
9.Adjust seasoning (salt)
10.Drop in dumplings and cover with a lid
When dumplings are floating, kill the heat, and put the lid back on the pot. Dumplings will continue to cook, and lentils will not over cook.
Unbleached All Purpose Flour: 2 cups
Salt: 1 tsp
Baking Powder: 1/4 tsp
Cold Water: About 3/4 cup
1.Mix dry ingredients together and form a dome in the center of the flour. Gradually mix in cold water and incorporate until a dough ball forms.
2.Dust dough ball with flour if needed to prevent an impossible to prevent completely sticky mess.
3.I don't knead my dumpling dough. If you have a super family dumpling method, use it!
4. Rest dough.
Make your dumpling dough first. You'll have alighter, fluffier dumpling, instead of a bunch of dense cannon balls from not letting it rest.
If you want curry with rice, or bulgar wheat, cook separately. Grains are greedy! When left over lunch time comes, you'll have exploding curry rice. No broth!
Garnish with fresh cliantro (coriander), mint, Thai basil, etc. Get creative!