Not technically lentils! But if you refer to them all as pulses (lentils, beans, peas…) you’ll be correct.
Want to know more? “Dal is often translated as “lentils” but actually refers to a split version of a number of lentils, peas, chickpeas (chana), kidney beans and so on. If a pulse is split into half, it is a dal. For example, split mung beans are mung dal.”
This simple sweet comes originally from Southeast Asia — it’s popular in Indonesia and Malaysia, as well as Goa in India. Here dodol is enhanced with beet to add complexity of flavor; another popular approach is to omit the beets and instead add 1 tsp. of pandan extract, which will give a bright green color and add subtle flavor.
If you can find glutinous rice flour, that will produce a more traditional chewy result; this version with regular rice flour is more on the cake-like side in terms of texture. Both are delicious. Note that ‘glutinous’ refers to the sticky and gluey texture of the cooked flour; glutinous rice flour does not actually contain gluten.
If you can, I recommend having at least two people available to work on this, as it’s much easier to stir the mixture as it thickens, if you can switch off!
3/4 c. rice flour (or glutinous rice flour)
4 c. coconut milk
1/2 c. jaggery
1 small beet, peeled and cubed
1/2 t. cardamom
a pinch of salt
chopped pistachio and shredded coconut to garnish
1. In a medium bowl, combine rice flour and 3 c. coconut milk.
2. In a medium saucepan on low heat, combine remaining 1 c. coconut milk with jaggery, stirring to dissolve. Stir rice flour mixture into the pan.
3. Puree beet (add a little water if necessary to help puree), and stir into the pan, along with cardamom and salt.
4. Cook over low heat, stirring continuously until mixture starts to thicken — 30-60 minutes.
5. When the mixtures starts to form a soft, fudge-y ball and pull away from the sides of the pan, it’s ready. You should see a slight sheen of oil starting to appear as you stir.
6. Transfer to a greased dish, and garnish with pistachios and coconut flakes. Cashews are also popular garnishes.
I admit, vegetable juice drinks are new to me; I was a little suspicious when I first went to taste beet juice. I thought it might be very, well, beet-y.
But in fact, when you add cardamom, sugar, coconut, and most importantly, lime, the end result is a sweet & tangy drink packed full of nutrient goodness. This would be gorgeous in a pitcher on a brunch board, or served poolside.
1 large beet, peeled and cubed small
1 t. ground cardamom
1/4 – 1/2 c. sugar (to taste)
2 c. coconut milk
2 c. water
3 T lime juice
1. Combine ingredients in a blender; serve chilled.