Do you remember that fab quiz show ASK THE FAMILY with Robert Robinson? That was a big favourite in our house (in the days of only 3 TV channels – BBC1, BBC2 and ITV!). For all of you out there too young to know about this fabulous programme, just know that ASK THE FAMILY united families across the country, crammed onto their sofas on a cold winters night as they shouted out the answers at the telly – check it out on You Tube. Timeless vintage viewing!
One of the best rounds was where they showed a close up picture of something and then the families had to guess what it was.. E.g. the side of a cheese grater or the pips in an apple.. Supremely tricky and a real sense of achievement if you got one!!
So here is my ASK THE FAMILY picture above. Would love to see if you know what it is!!! As a clue it has some bearing on this blog…. The mystery deepens! GUESSES BELOW PLEASE – SENSE OF SMUGNESS FOR CORRECT ANSWERS!
I don’t know about all of you out there but no matter how old I get, or even thought I am bringing up my own family, I still love the food my mum cooks me and when I go to visit her I preplan what I want to eat and she cooks it for me! Coming from a Fijian background the staple meal is curry and I am very lucky that my mum is a trained cook so her curries are stuff legends are made of. She can and has curried everything, lamb, chicken, fish – all yummy.
Plus she does a wicked crab curry. In fact I have vivid memories of when we were growing up in Poole. My mum used to take us down to the harbour early on Saturday mornings and she would buy crabs fresh off the fishing boats. The live crabs would be wrapped up in newspaper and put in the foot well in front of us 3 kids as we sat in the back of the car and we used to squeal with terror and trepidation all the way home as we could hear the crabs moving around and tearing at the newspaper trying to get out… (Extra hint you use the thing in the picture for mums’ crab curry)
But regardless of the curry of choice on my visits mum always also makes me her dahl. I love it and could honestly eat it every day. It’s my comfort food, (my Fijian shepherds pie!) Eaten with rice and fresh tomato/red onion/chilli and coriander chutney it is just THE best. My mum, like all good cooks doesn’t measure or weigh anything so I had to beg her to put a recipe together and here it is. It’s super simple, and super scrumptious so please try my mama’s cooking with me!
Love Angeli x
- 225g split peas (not lentils although I’m sure you can use them.
- Water (about 750ml)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 – 1 teaspoon cumin seeds depending on taste
- 2 -3 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 fresh chilli chopped) or ½ teaspoon of chilli powder if you don’t have fresh.
- fresh coriander to garnish
Wash the lentils in a colander then put on the stove with the water and bring to a rapid boil. You may find that as it boils you get a layer of froth – if you do just scrape if off with a spoon.
Then add the turmeric and salt and turn the heat down and leave to gently cook. It takes time – maybe about an hour. Keep a eye on it towards the end making sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan and add more water if it becomes too thick. The great thing about this is that you can’t really overcook it so don’t be scared if you have to add more water it will cook away. And, as long at the split peas are soft, you can decide how thick or runny you want the dahl to be.
About 30 mins into the cook stir in the garam masala.
Once the dahl is thick and the split peas soft heat the butter in a frying pan. When it is bubbling away chuck in the cumin seeds. (and inhale – amazing smell!) when they are fragrant and lightly browned add put in the garlic.
Stir and fry until the garlic pieces are soft and then add the fresh chilli or chilli powder. Immediately lift the pan off the heat and pour the mixture into the pot with the split peas.. mix it all together and you are done. Season more if you think you need to and sprinkle with fresh coriander to serve.
All done and eat! . Yummy yum.