About this project
I moved far away from any Trader Joe's stores so I kept a dip container with the intent to figure out how to make it someday, and I got pretty close! It's basically a curried hummus-type dip made with lentils. I can't afford tahini, and I can't eat it fast enough before it goes bad so I just use sesame seeds, but you can use tahini and it would probably be even better! I also leave out oil, which is in the ingredients list, so you can add some as well, but I like it just fine without it. I obviously left out a few other things, because they're not stuff I ever have in my house, but you can play around with the recipe. Masala's really expensive, so I just use the cheaper stuff, which isn't at all the same as masala, but you might be able to find something close that's cheaper. I use a combo of a Trader Joe's curry and a McCormick curry, but I'm sure it doesn't really affect it too much.
Put all the ingredients in a food processor (a blender could work, too, you just might have to settle for a slightly runnier dip) and process until it's dip-ish. I usually go until the sesame seeds aren't very visible, so probably about 3 or more minutes, but if you're using tahini you probably won't have to process as long.
If the taste is a little off to you, I recommend playing around with adding either more salt or more sugar (I like a little molasses) before messing around with the other spices. I like a bit more cayenne, but I like all my food really spicy. Add more water or oil if it's too thick.
This makes about three cups worth by the looks of my quart-sized tupperware container. I would definitely halve it if you don't intend to eat it within a week, maybe less. Not sure how long it'll keep. It separates more than the store-bought dip, so just mix it before you eat it and it should be fine!
My ingredient list won't save properly so here it is:
3 cups cooked lentils (i always cook them with salt and some garlic cloves)
2 tbsp sesame seeds or tahini
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp lemon pepper
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp turmeric (can omit or add 1/2 tsp more of curry if you don't have this)
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp paprika
salt to taste
dash of cayenne pepper, or more if you like it spicy
2 tbsp oil, optional