They say diamonds are a girl’s best friend. The theory being if she loses her man, she can always sell the diamonds to keep herself. Most of us seem to love diamonds although in many ways I like crystals better – they sparkle more. Elizabeth Taylor used to like them, she even sponsored a perfume called White Diamonds. Considering diamonds are really lumps of highly compressed carbon, it is amazing how important they have become. Diamond houses use the four Cs, carat, cut, colour, clarity for grading and certifying stones as well as fluorescence which provides the well known ‘fire’ in a diamond. In North America diamonds are always used for engagement rings although this wasn’t the case in England when I lived there, in 37 years things may have changed, but Princess Diana had a sapphire, surrounded by diamonds admittedly and of course the Duchess of Cambridge has the same ring. Many of the royal engagement rings have either been diamonds, or included a fair sprinkling of them, Sarah Ferguson had rubies and diamonds. On this side of the pond, people say “she got her diamond” as another way of saying someone became engaged.
In England we used to eat, and still do as far as I know, a lot of Indian food. There are supposed to be more Indian food takeaways than there are fish and chip shops these days. Many of us love Indian food in all its varied, and delicious forms. One dish which I always enjoy with my curry is dahl and I have made it on several occasions, particularly if I am entertaining. A lot of Indian food is vegetarian and this one fits right in that category.
DahlSource: Cookit Simply
225 g (8 oz) lentils, brown or green
60 g (2 oz) butter or margarine
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 red or green chilli pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 tsp each ground cumin, coriander and turmeric
1/2 tsp each ground cinnamon and nutmeg
850 ml(1 1/2 pints) vegetable stock
Salt and pepper
1 bay leaf
Chopped fresh coriander leaves
method1. Cover the lentils with water and soak overnight. Alternatively, microwave for 10 minutes on HIGH to bring to the boil and then allow the lentils to boil for 2 minutes. Leave to stand, covered, for 1 hour.
2. Melt the butter or margarine for 1 minute on HIGH in a large casserole. Add the onion, garlic, chilli pepper and spices. Cook for 4 minutes on MEDIUM.
3. Drain the lentils and add to the casserole with the vegetable stock, salt, pepper and bay leaf. Cover and cook on HIGH for 45 minutes, or until the lentils are soft and tender.
4. Allow to stand, covered, for 5-10 minutes before serving. Remove the bay leaf and add the chopped coriander. If preferred, the dahl can be puréed before serving.
Have a great day