1 cup red lentils or 1 cup yellow split peas (these take a little longer to cook)
1 cup water
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon red chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
juice of 1 lime
Rinse and drain the lentils or split peas several times until they no longer cloud water. Put them in a medium sized pot and add water. Add the cumin, chili powder, and salt; stir. Bring to a boil while stirring occasionally. Reduce to a simmer. Continue to whisk lentils and spices for about half an hour, or until lentils begin to dissolve and become more of a mush. Be careful to keep whisking so as to keep the lentils from clumping or burning; in the event that the water boils off, add more, 1/4 cup at a time.
In a skillet, heat the olive oil over medium/low heat briefly, and add the onion. Cook until partially softened but not browned. Add garlic and sauté for about 5 minutes more.
When the lentil mixture is a soft puree with no more chunks of individual lentils, remove from heat. Add the sautéed onion, garlic, and excess olive oil and mix in. Squeeze the juice of one lime (or more, depending on taste) over the mixture and stir. You're done!
The magical part about this recipe is that it's relatively quick, and doubles or triples reeeeally easily. I frequently make this for dinner on Sunday night and eat it for lunch several days the following week. Plus it's very cheap to make as well as crowd-pleasing.