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I’m using Chow’s recipe feature to note down and collect the recipes for my Asian family’s everyday food. This particular dish, for a clear tomato and lentil-based soup, is a staple of our table which we make once or twice every week. It keeps well and is delicious cold or hot. It is typically served over white rice, but you could drink it plain as a soup or serve over rice cakes (i.e., idlis). The smell of this dish cooking is really good!
You need some typical Indian spices on hand in order to make this dish. Don’t buy them at your grocery store! They’re usually much cheaper at the ethnic market, if you have access to one. Also, if you don’t have a pressure cooker or just don’t feel like cooking lentils for this dish, skip them completely or add a few tablespoons of raw ground lentils to the dish as it’s simmering.
If you can’t be bothered to cook the lentils, you can skip this step. To substitute for cooked lentils in this dish, you can grind 1/4 cup of raw lentils and add at the appropriate stage.