Yesterday I visited my dear cousin and her family. Her husband is Nepalese and he made the most beautiful lunch of lentil daal, vegetable curry and a fiery tomato achar which is a pickle that is served alongside the food. He packed for me a little container of achar to go. I was very excited to eat it again so I made a few things to eat with it.
This daal was based on this recipe that I found at Food-Nepal.com. I did not have any other kind of lentils like black lentils or yellow so I used green/brown. I could have used red but I wanted to see if the green lentil would work. I didn't have a couple of the spices like jimbu and asafetida either. I'm sure that the use of these would have made the daal more authentic. The step at the end where you fry the chiles, garlic and onions, I added a teaspoon of black mustard seed. I fried them in olive oil instead of ghee which is clarified butter which I do not eat.
This is the alu matar (potatoes and peas) from 'The Flavors of India' cookbook. I thought since a lot of the spices and flavors are similar to Nepalese cooking, I'd enjoy this with the daal and achar.
A beautiful feast. My cousin's achar is in the little bowl in front. I don't remember what's in it (except for roasted tomatoes!) but it's very special and very spicy! I have to ask for the recipe one day.
Edited to add: I found a tomato achar recipe here.
I don't know if it's the same as my cousin's recipe but a lot of the spices/flavors seem right.