A longtime favorite soup of mine that I often make when I don’t want to fuss and want something warming and easy to digest, this attractive and gently spiced ural dal and tomato soup is always worth another share. And another taste too. Creamy mild urad dal combines so well with tangy tomatoes, hot peppers, ginger and cumin. I took advantage of a surplus of cherry tomatoes from our garden for an extra boost of flavor and goodness as well as a red bell pepper too for some extra flair. Sometimes simplicity is exactly what the body needs. This easy-to-make recipe just might become a staple in your kitchen too.
1 to 2 red or green chilies, seeded and finely chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
2 tablespoons sesame oil or ghee
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 to 3 dried whole red chilies, broken into bits
1-inch piece fresh ginger, grated or minced
1/2 teaspoon asafetida
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)
Bring the water, turmeric and cayenne to a boil in a large saucepan. Stir in the urad dal and again bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to moderately low, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.
Stir in the tomatoes and chilies. Cover again and continue to simmer for another 40 minutes. Stir in the red pepper and simmer for another 10 minutes until the dal is soft and fully cooked. Remove from heat and stir in the salt.
Heat the oil or ghee in a small saucepan or frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add the cumin seeds, dried chilies and ginger. Stir and fry for a few minutes. Toss in the asafetida, quickly stir, and immediately pour into the soup. Cover and let sit for 5 minutes or longer to allow the seasonings to soak into the dal.
Serve hot, garnished with fresh chopped parsley if desired.