Cook Book Explores Why “Daals” Are Not Always Dull


New Delhi(PTI): Daal may sound a little dull to many and pulses may not be that visually striking but a new book seeks to debunk this perception by dishing out an array of recipes made out of these ingredients thus igniting many a culinary imagination.

“Pull of Pulses: Full of Beans” offers a wide variety of different lentils commonly consumed in rural and urban households of India.

The recipes include not only daal curries but also daal-based snacks, savouries and sweets and cover most regions and communities of India.

The recipes have been classified into different groups – soups and salads, savouries, main course, pulaos, breads, desserts, all-time favourites and some from around the world.

The book is a combined effort of food historian and Persian scholar Salma Husain and executive chef Vijay Thukral of the India International Centre (IIC), New Delhi.

Rich in nutritional value, high on culinary flexibility and low on price, lentils or daals are part of the daily staple all across India.

“Nutritionists consider lentils as a great substitute for meat because they are high in protein and are a storehouse of minerals. Bengal gram (chana), black gram (urad), green gram (moong), red gram (masoor) and yellow gram (arhar) are loaded with potassium and chloride which help sustain the natural chemicals within the body,” says Husain.

While legumes, pulses and lentils are used in many parts of the world – North Africa, southern Europe, West Asia, China and the countries of Latin America it is in the Indian sub-continent that they are cooked not just on a wide scale but also with unmatched culinary skills and imagination.
Some of the innovative dishes mentioned in the book, published by Niyogi, are rangeen pulao (coloured rice and lentils), khasa tilaai (yellow lentil cooked with ginger juice and yoghurt), daal ka dulha (lentil with dumpling), murgh dhansak (lentils with vegetables and chicken), and machher matha diye moong daal (fish head cooked in lentils).


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