Vishakha’s Cream of Vegetable Dal Soup

-Recipe from Yamuna mataji

           Here is a quick pressure-cooker soup. The rice and legumes complement each other nutritionally and with the vegetables, seasonings and powdered spices –make a full-bodied creamy soup. Practically a meal in itself, this dish needs only a fresh flatbread and salad to make an excellent light lunch. If the vegetables listed are not available, you can substitute peeled Jerusalem artichokes, winter squash, summer squash or freeze peas in equivalent amounts.

Dal soaking time: 1 hour
Preparation time: (after assembling ingredients): 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Serves: 4 or 5

3 table spoons (45 ml) yellow or green split peas
3 table spoons (45 ml) split moong dal or toovar dal,
  Or 3 more table spoons (45 ml) of split peas
3 table spoons (45 ml) basmati or other long-grain white rice
2 table spoons (30 ml) butter or ghee
teaspoon (2 ml) turmeric
teaspoon (1 ml) yellow asafetida powder (hing)
-inch (1.5 cm) piece of fresh ginger root, peeled
2 medium-sized carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) pieces
small cauliflower, stemmed and cut into flowerets
6 whole red radishes
5 cups (1.25 liters) water
1 table spoon (15 ml) ground cumin
1 table spoon (15 ml) ground coriander
1 teaspoon (5 ml) garam masala
teaspoon (2 ml) freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoons (7 ml) salt
2 table spoons (30 ml) fresh minced parsley or coriander

This amount applies only to yellow Cobra brand. Reduce any asafetida by three-fourths.

1.    Soak the split peas in hot water for 1 hour, then drain. Sort, wash and drain the split moong or toovar dal
2.    Combine the rice, legumes, butter or ghee, turmeric, asafetida, green chili, ginger root, vegetables and water in a 6-quart/liter pressure cooker. Cook under pressure for a little more than 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow the pressure to drop.
3.    Blend half of the cooked vegetables and 2 cups (600 ml) of broth from the pressure cooker in a blender. Blend at high speed to make a creamy smooth soup. Transfer to a heavy 2-quart/liter nonstick saucepan. Blend the other half of the cooked vegetables with the remaining broth plus enough water to make 2 cups (600 ml) of liquid and add to the soup.
4.    Sprinkle in the ground coriander, cumin and garam masala. Bring the soup to a gentle boil, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, and boil for 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat.
5.    Add the black pepper, salt and minced herb. Stir and serve.