For most South Asian’s in the UK – dal is more than just a food item, it is that reminiscence of the taste of home, the love and affection mum puts in her cooking and more than anything comfort. Though it is a dish we all love, it can be time-consuming to cook from scratch, especially today, where women are juggling various roles – from being a homemaker to a working professional.
Understanding their challenges and endeavouring to make their life simpler without compromising on taste – UK’s oldest spice brand Rajah launched the Rajah Heat & Stir Dal Range. This week, we spoke exclusively to the readers of Weekly Tribune to food writer Manju Malhi.
Raised in North West London, Manju grew up surrounded by Indian culture, traditions, and lifestyles. As an Asian girl growing up in West London, her interest in cooking started at an early age, where she learnt authentic Indian recipes from her mother. She spent several years of her childhood in India where she explored and experienced varied cuisines of the country. In her cooking, she draws upon her past and combines it with the realities of urban Western life and has come up with her own unique Brit-Indi style of food.
She said: “I am lucky to have learnt the tricks of the trade from my mother who has passed on her passion for Indian cuisine to me. While even something like a dal can take a long time, to me it’s the process which is enriching. But sometimes even food writers need a break from cooking.”
While for Manju the experience of cooking gives her immense pleasure, after a day full of cooking classes and shows, she craves for a homely meal, but sometimes is too tired to cook, and that’s when she always has something handy and quick to heat up. “For me freshness is key, so even when I buy readymade food for the days I am too tired to cook I will ensure it is healthy and is a brand I can trust.”
So, when she tried Rajah Heat and Stir Dal’s she decided to add her own twist to it. Not one to follow the book, she added her Manju magic to Rajah’s Heat and Stir Dal range as well.
On why she tried the Heat and Stir range, Manju said: “Rajah’s new Heat and Stir range taste is very authentic. It’s convenient and I enjoyed it by adding my own little twist. I am pleasantly surprised it has no preservatives, which is a definite plus point.”
Manju’s Magic Tips
- Serve steamed basmati rice with Rajah Heat & Stir’s Dal Tadka. Add a generous dollop of ghee, some finely chopped coriander and a spritz of lime for an extra zing.
- Rajah’s Heat & Stir Dal Makhani tasted great when served with naan or plain roti, with a bit of cream to elevate the taste.