A variety of lentils exist with colors that range from yellow to red-orange to green, brown or even black. There are both large and small-seeded varieties. Lentils are generally sold as dry seeds.
Lentils have been part of the human diet since the aceramic Neolithic period.
In Indian and other South Asian cuisines, the English word lentil is applied to many different legumes including lentils, beans and peas. Although sometimes used whole, they are more often used split and hulled (skin removed), in which case they are called dal or dhal. Stripped of their outer skin, split lentils are usually bright yellow, orange, green or brown in color. The thick, often spicy stew prepared from lentil and other dals is also known as dal.
Recipes using brown lentils:
Recipes using Masoor dal (split red lentils):