I have (minimally) adapted this from here. It can be made either as more of a soup, or a stewy pasty thing to eat with rice (and might I suggest Lillian's cumin rice).If you're interested in more information on chana dal than you could ever have wanted, see here. This is supposed to use the "kabuli" style of chana dal, but I'm guessing you'll be lucky enough to find ANY form of chana dal, let alone have a choice between 'desi' and 'kabuli.'
2 cups of Chana Dal
4 cups water
1 small onion (minced)
3 or so tomatoes, minced finely or pureed (I was pureeing tomatoes for palak paneer anyway)
1 tsp. of cumin seeds
1 tbsp. of fresh ginger (minced)
1 tbsp. of garlic (minced)
1/2 tsp. of turmeric powder
1 tbsp. of coriander Powder
1 tsp. of cayenne pepper (or more - this gave it a relatively mild spiciness). I also think it would be good with jalapenos)
Salt (to taste)
1 tbsp. of fresh lemon Juice or Fresh Lime Juice (I used lemon)
Either cook the dal in the water until tender (not sure how long that takes in a normal pan) or cook it in a pressure cooker for 15-20 minutes. If it looks way too thick, you can add more water, but remember that the tomatoes will thin it out quite a bit. Puree using an immersion blender or with some other implement of destruction. You don't need to puree completely - some people like to leave 1/3-1/2 of the daals intact, though the chana dal was a bit chalky in unsmooshed form.
In a small bit of oil, heat the cumin seeds until they crackle, then add the onion, ginger and garlic. Cook until onions are translucent, then add turmeric, coriander and cayenne. Stir for about twenty seconds, then add the tomatoes, and bring to a boil. Add to the dal, along with salt.
Reheat the dal tomato mixture, simmer for a couple of minutes, and then add lemon juice. Adjust for salt and spiciness (well, if it's too spicy, you're probably just SOL, but if it's not spicy enough you could add a bit more cayenne).
I would have taken a picture, but my poor camera is out of batteries.