There is no shortage of slow cooker recipes popping up all over the place now that it’s fall. So why should you try this one? Because.
And also, it was a “perfect on the first try” recipe. A simple, healthy, flavourful stew that tastes great right out of the slow cooker and even greater the next day for lunch.
I tend to use my gigantic slow cooker in fits and starts. I find it does a great job of braising meat slow and low, but vegetables? Not so much. In my experience, they get obliterated beyond recognition. Sure, you can shorten the cook time. But then why use a slow cooker? Isn’t the idea to set it and forget it for the day? All this to say, since I seldom cook with meat at home, mine has been getting hauled out a couple of times a year at most. And I’ve decided, it’s just not enough to justify all of the valuable kitchen real estate it occupies.
So it’s been slow cooker testing mania all up in here.
This recipe is a mash up of a slow cooker daal I found in The Best of Bridge Family Slow Cooker cookbook and my favourite stovetop daal recipe from Indian Cooking Unfolded by Raghavan Iyer. Guys. It’s really really good.
I really like the combination of split peas and red lentils. The lentils break down quite a bit more than the peas and give the daal a rich, thick texture. If you’ve only got one or the other though, it’s all good. Roll with it. Fiddle with the spices if you like, too. Add a pinch of cayenne for heat. Replace some of the chicken stock with coconut milk, or simply add a can of coconut milk and make it more of a soup.
When it’s done, jazz it up however you like. Add fresh herbs (cilantro, parsley), a dollop of yogurt or sour cream or a squeeze of lime. Sprinkle on some toasted almonds or pine nuts or top with some cool, creamy avocado cubes. It can be as humble or as fancy as you like.
Eat up, buttercups.