Cooking

Southeast Asian Kitchen: Dhal

Southeast Asian Kitchen is a Tablecrafter series on cooking dishes inspired by the different regional cuisines in Southeast Asia.


The eponymous Indian lentil stew combines the richness of coconut milk and robust spices used in the region. Usually paired with the roti canai or steamed rice, its complexity shines through in every meal. Everyday ingredients coupled with intense aromatic spices combine to make the flavorful vegetarian fare. Don't let its lack of conventional protein sources let you think that this dish lacks substance. These lentils contain a respectable amount of protein for everyday fare.

Dhal

Yield: 3 cups, estimated
Time: 50 minutes (10 min prep / 40 min cooking)
 


Ingredients:

  • 1 cup red lentils, picked through
  • 1 white onion, minced
  • 3 small tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1½ tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp chili powder, optional
  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • 1½ cups water or vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp salt

Procedure:

  1. Sauté the onions over medium heat with the vegetable oil until translucent, about four minutes. Add the garlic and cook for one minute more.
  2. Add the tomatoes and spices. Stir for three minutes.
  3. Pour in the coconut milk and water. Bring to a boil and lower to a simmer. Cook until the lentils are tender, about 30 minutes. Add more liquid if necessary. Serve with roti canai or white rice.

Did you enjoy our easy dhal recipe? Drop us a line on our email hello@tablecrafter.com, we'd love to know what you thought of our recipe!

Cooking

Make It Fresh: Melon Pan

Make it Fresh is a Tablecrafter series that features great recipes that you can recreate at home.


Popular in many countries, particularly in Asia and Latin America, the sweet melon pan captures more hearts by the minute. Not necessarily melon flavored, its name can be attributed to its resemblance to a melon. Although the bun has a various flavorings, from actual melon to being filled with custard. Simultaneously sweet, crisp, and fluffy the bun triumphs in textural variety. Savour each crumb of this bun at home by making yourself a batch. 

Melon Pan

Yield: 16 servings
Time: 2 hours and 45 minutes (2 hours and 30 min prep / 15 min baking)


Ingredients:

bread dough

  • 300g bread flour
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • ⅔ cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp instant dry yeast

cookie dough

  • 120g all purpose flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • sugar, for sprinkling

Procedure: Bread Dough

  1. Combine the yeast, milk, and sugar in a small bowl or jug and cover. Set aside for 5 minutes then stir in the egg.
  2. Combine the flour and salt in a stand up mixer with the hook attachment.
  3. Add the liquid mixture and stir to form a soft dough, knead for about 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
  4. Transfer the dough in a greased bowl and cover. Set aside in a warm place to proof for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Procedure: Cookie Dough

  1. Combine butter and sugar in a large bowl and beat until light and creamy.
  2. Add the egg and vanilla essence, mix until throroughly combines. Fold through the flour and baking powder.
  3. Roll into a log and chill for 25 minutes.

Procedure: Assembly

  1. While the cookie dough is setting, divide the bread dough into 8 equal parts and knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth.
  2. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  3. Roll out the chilled cookie dough to 5mm thick. Using a round cookie cutter, cut out 3 inch wide cookies. 
  4. Once all the bread dough has been kneaded and the cookie dough has been rolled out and cut, place the cookie dough on the divided bread dough and wrap together.
  5. Score the cookie dough surface diagonally and roll on the granulated sugar. Repeat for all bread rolls.
  6. Place the prepared bread rolls on a lined oven tray and set aside for about 10 minutes or until doubled in size.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes.

Did you enjoy our Melon Pan recipe? Let us know how much you enjoyed this recipe by sending us an email at hello@tablecrafter.com. We can't wait to hear more from you!