Lenticchie Gialle Indiane con le Spezie "Panch Puran" & Gamberetti
Shrimp Mung Dal- Indian Yellow Lentils with Shrimp and Panch Puran Spices
So after 2 weeks in Sicily for the holidays and festivities with my family and friends, it is back to the reality of life in stormy and Wintery Frankfurt- brrr! The winds were so strong this evening that there was no way I was going to brave the elements and go out foraging for food- so I had to rely on what was left in my fridge from before my trip- zoiks! That meant- a 3 week old carrot, a stick of celery, a shallot, a chunk of ginger and in the freezer, a handful of shrimp. Well, that was good enough for me! And this is what I turned it into...
I started off by finely dicing the carrot and celery and finely slicing the shallot and ginger.
Into the frying pan it went, with a little crushed garlic and a pat of clarified butter. Once the onion had become translucent, I added about a tablespoon of ground "panch puran" spices which are fenugreek, Nigella seed, cumin seed, radhuni and fennel seed in equal parts, along with salt, pepper and a little cayenne. Then I added the lentils- about one mug full, and about the same amount of water. I brought the water up to the boil and put on the lid, letting them simmer for 10-15 minutes.
In the meantime, I split the shrimp with a butterfly cut, cleaned them and prepared them, along with some dried herbs, to finish off my dish of spicy lentils. The herbs I used were a mix of fenugreek leaf, coriander, parsley, chives and curry leaf. I would have preferred to have used fresh herbs of course... but hey- reality bites sometimes!
After around 15 minutes, I added the shrimp, herbs, a little extra chili, a good squeeze of lemon and a little sesame oil, which may not be very authentic- but it certainly was yummy!
I sautéed everything together, stirred for 1-2 minutes, then replaced the lid, turned off the heat, and allowed the lentils to steam a little for a further 3-4 minutes. By that time, the shrimp were cooked and juicy and all of the flavors in the pan had combined to become a rich, nutty and spicy treat- yum! Dinner was served, the evening was saved... and so was my routine!
It is good to be home and cooking in my own kitchen again!