The national dish of Nepal: Dal Bhat
Dal Bhat is connected to Nepali culture like the baguette is connected to France. Or even more. It´s more then the National Dish of Nepal. For many people in Nepal Dal Bhat is the meal they eat two time a day. For their whole life. For western civilization this sounds weird but it´s a fact. When we stayed in Nepal we also ate Dahl Bhat once a day. Especially when you go trekking in the Nepali mountains you´ll find out that Dal Bhat is the only dish that fills you up and gives you the energy to keep on walking. And you always get some an extra portion when you eat Dal Bhat.
Dal Bhat is a mixture of a few dishes. You serve Rice alongside cooked Lentils called Dahl and a fresh made Vegetable Curry named Tarkari. In every family they also eat Dal Bhat with homemade Pickles like Kakro Ko Achar (Nepali Cucumber Pickles) or Khade Ko Mula Ko Achar (Nepali Radish Pickle).
350 g lentils
600 ml water
½ tsp turmeric
1 tsp garlic, minced
3 tbs peanut oil
120 g onions, chopped
2 dried red chili
1 pn asafetida
Salt to taste
Wash lentils and soak for 10 minutes in cold water. (Lentils should be completely covered.) Remove anything that float on the surface after it and drain extra water.
Add drained lentils in fresh water and bring to a boil again. Add turmeric and asafetida. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 25 to 30 minutes until lentils are soft.
Fry onions, chili and garlic in a pan with peanut oil. Stir into lentils and shut down heat. Taste with salt. Serve with fresh Jasmine or Basmati rice, Tarkari and Pickles.
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