I won’t be lying if I said the pressure cooker is the workhorse of an Indian kitchen. Growing up, I’ve watched my Mom cook everything form rice, lentils, legumes, soups, vegetables, etc. in a pressure cooker and the kitchen was always loud with the whistling from the beat up, overused Prestige Pressure Cooker. Cleaning up the house recently, I found a Fagor Pressure Cooker in the garage. I can’t exactly remember when I bought it or if it was a gift, but I was super excited to try it out (and nervous too). The first recipe I wanted to try was Lentil Curry with Potatoes. When I made the lentil burger the last time around, took me a good 45 minutes or more to cook the lentils completely.
This recipe is incredibly forgiving, almost like a stir fry. You can skip ingredients, add new ones and they all come out just fine. With my new found excitement for lentil curry and pressure cookers, I also realized that I was out of onions. So ended up using leeks instead.
- 1 leek, trimmed and chopped
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 3-4 cloves garlic, diced
- 2-3 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds (or powder)
- 1 tsp cardamom powder
- 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
- 2-3 cloves
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder
- ½ tsp paprika (or chile powder)
- 1-2 tsp garam masala
- 2-3 cups of diced tomatoes
- 1 cup whole green lentils
- 3-4 medium potatoes, diced large
- 3 cups of water
- ½ cup cilantro, chopped
The coconut oil gives this lentil curry recipe an amazing fragrance and the fact that it doesn’t add carcinogens at high temperature makes it ideal for the pressure cooker. Rinse the lentils a couple of times, remove any debris and set aside. Add the oil into the Fagor pressure cooker and then all of the spices. Cook until the oil is infused with their aroma and then add the onions and turmeric powder. Stir frequently and sweat the onions on high heat. Turn down the heat and then add the garlic, ginger and garam masala. Cook for a couple of minutes. Add the diced tomatoes, stir to mix well and cook until the tomatoes break down. Add the whole lentils, the potatoes and the water.
This is my favorite part. Cover the lid on the pressure cooker, set the regulator control dial on the Fagor to the pressurize position and turn up the heat. When you start seeing steam come out at a steady pace, start a timer, turn down the heat to medium to medium-high and cook for about 10 minutes. At the end of 10 minutes, turn off the stove and set the regulator to the open position to immediately release the pressure. Wait until the visual indicator on the handle pops back and then open the lid. Garnish with cilantro and salt to taste and your lentil curry is ready! Serve over a bed of organic brown rice and stir fried leafy vegetables like Kale or Mustard Greens.
How do you make lentil curry? Do you use the pressure cooker?
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