NB ALL spices and quantities are adjustable, you can leave out one or more spices. If you like a thinner dahl, add more water. If you like a thicker dahl, add less water. This serves more if used as a side dish.
Pick through dried pulses for stones or other foreign material in a plastic bowl or ice- cream container.
Rinse several times by swishing water in this container, like washing rice.
Place in dutch oven or extra large saucepan and cover with water about two inches over the top.
Bring to the boil and simmer for about 10 minutes.
Drain pot, and save the water for your plants.Cover with fresh water and bring to boil.
Simmer for about 30-4o minutes until dahl is tender, or mushy, however you like it. You can add more boiling water from your kettle as you are cooking, if you think it's getting dry. Some kinds of pulse take longer than others, and some absorb more water.
Then stir in tomato and spinach,
Whilst dahl is still simmering gently, place oil in a small frypan, and heat. Add the spices to the hot oil and fry whilst stirring until the cumin seeds darken and begin to roast 30sec-1&1/2 mins - be careful, the mustard seeds may start to pop and spit.
As soon as the spices begin to darken and roast, tip the contents into your dahl pot and stir. BE CAREFUL, YOU ARE ADDING FAT TO WATER. STAND BACK FROM THE POT AS YOU ADD.