Gujarati Dal: Yellow Lentils with Peanuts and Jaggery

2 Mar

Gujarati Dal

Peanuts and jaggery in toor dal? It sounded bizarre and it wasn’t something I had cooked or eaten before. When I saw this recipe for Gujarati dal on a food show on NDTV Good Times I decided to try it in my own kitchen that very day.

The original called for kokum which I didn’t have, so I added an extra tomato to match the sourness. I also switched a few ingredients to suit my taste. Loved how the dal turned out in the end.

You Need:

To boil together:
  • Toor Dal – 1 cup
  • Peanuts (raw, unsalted) – 1/3rd cup
  • Ginger – 1 inch piece, crushed
  • Green chilies – 2, slit vertically
  • Turmeric powder – 1 teaspoon
The tadka:
  • Tomatoes – 3, chopped fine
  • Coriander powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Mustard seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • Asoefetida – a pinch
  • Cloves – 2
  • Cinnamon – 1/2 inch stick
  • Ghee – 1 tablespoon
The flavorings:
  • Jaggery – 1 tablespoon
  • Salt – to taste
  • Lemon juice – 1 teaspoon
  • Coriander leaves – a few sprigs, chopped finely

How To Make Gujarati Dal:

Wash the dal thoroughly and soak it in water for an hour. Drain, rinse and transfer to a pressure with 2.5 cups of water, the peanuts, turmeric powder, crushed ginger and slit green chilies.

Pressure cook the dal on high flame till one whistle, then reduce flame and cook till the next whistle. Keep the cooker aside to let the pressure release naturally.

Prepare the tadka while the cooker cools. Heat the ghee in a small pan. Add to it in order: mustard seeds, cloves, cinnamon, cumin seeds, gently turning the pan so that the tadka does not burn. When the cumin seeds begin to turn color, add asoefetida and then the chopped tomatoes. Sprinkle some salt over the tomatoes, cover and cook, stirring occasionally. When the tomatoes are mushy, add coriander powder. Cook for another five minutes. If the tadka looks dangerously close to charring, add a tablespoon of the dal stock to it.

Season the dal while the tomatoes cook. When the pressure cooker has cooled enough to let the lid come off, open the lid, add salt and jaggery and mix firmly when a spatula. Put the cooker on the fire for another five minutes to let the jaggery blend well and to have the dal piping hot for the tadka.

Put it all together. Your tadka is done when the tomatoes turn red-brown and the raw smell leaves the coriander powder. Mix the tadka with the dal along with lemon juice.

Garnish Gujarati dal with coriander leaves.

Gujarati Dal: Yellow Lentils with Peanuts and Jaggery

Serve Gujarati dal with boiled rice/chapatis and a dry vegetable stir-fry.

Meal in the the pic below: Gujarati dal with masala bhindi, spinach raita and chapatis.

Gujarati Dal - Toor Dal with Peanuts, Ginger and Jaggery

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