This dal is made in most households in the region of Gujarat, in Western India. The sweet-and-sour components reflect the importance of sweet notes in food from this region, while nuts add a comforting crunch. See alsoIndian-Spiced Lentils with Spinach and Rhubarb
- 2 cups split and skinned toor dal (pigeon peas), picked over and washed
- 1 large dried, pitted date
- 2 tbsp raw, unsalted, skinned peanuts
- 1 medium tomato, finely diced
- 1–4 fresh Thai or serrano chiles, stems removed and sliced into thin strips
- 1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 tbsp jaggery or light-brown sugar
- 1 tbsp salt, or more to taste
- 1 tsp red chile powder or cayenne
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 2 tbsp ghee or vegetable oil
- 1 pinch hing or asafoetida
- ½ tsp black or brown mustard seeds
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- 10 fenugreek seeds
- 3 cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 whole dried red chiles, broken into pieces
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 10 curry leaves
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- Juice of 1 lemon
In a large pot, bring dal, date, and 8 cups water to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until soft, 40 minutes.
In a blender, blend the dal until smooth. Pour back into pot.
In a small pot, bring peanuts and 2 cups water to a boil.
Reduce heat, and simmer until peanuts soften, 15 minutes; drain.
Add tomato, fresh chiles, ginger, jaggery, salt, red chile powder, turmeric, and 4 cups of water to dal.
In a shallow pan over medium-high heat, melt ghee.
Add hing, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, cloves, bay leaf, whole chiles, cinnamon sticks, and curry leaves until the mixture turns aromatic, just under a minute.
Pour tarka into dal.
Bring dal mixture to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, 10 minutes.
Remove cloves, bay leaf, and cinnamon sticks. Add cilantro and lemon juice.
Serve piping hot with basmati rice.
See alsoIndian Dal Tacos
- Serving Size: 8
- Calories: 171
- Carbohydrate Content: 6 g
- Fat Content: 6 g
- Fiber Content: 1 g
- Protein Content: 8 g
- Saturated Fat Content: 2 g