Chana Dal (Pisum Sativum) are small peas which are peeled and cut in half. This type of Legume dates from 6000 BCE and have been found buried with Egyptian mummies. They were brought to India by the Greeks and are now an important staple food in South Asia.
When cooked they lose their shape and are excellent for thickening soups and stews. Typically used with curry, they can be seasoned with many different herbs.
Rinse 1 cup of dry peas in several changes of cold water, until water runs clear. Cover with unsalted water, bring to boil over medium-high heat, cook for 25-30 minutes until peas are tender but still firm. One cup dry yields 2 cups cooked.