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Sweet, Spicy, and tangy, this Gujarati dal is a flavorful comfort food. Paired best with rice, Gujarati dal is a thin lentil soup /dal prepared with yellow lentils, herbs, and spices. Adding peanuts makes this dal a showstopper—vegan and plant-based food.
Dal-rice is the perfect food combo in almost every part of India. We grew up eating the same dal -rice paired with veg curry, chutney, salad, and papad. This was our comfort home food.
There are several varieties of dal. Every state /region has its own; most of the time, tempering also changes with the different households. So, I do not claim authenticity. However, it is my take on Gujarati dal, and very delicious. I will insist on trying it out.
What is Gujarati Dal?
This is also called Khatti-Meethi Dal. This tastes tangy, sweet, and spicy all at the same time. The consistency of this dal is typically thin, and it uses peanuts in the recipe.
Like all other North Indian Dal, this dal doesn't use onion or garlic. In Gujarati weddings, this dal is served with other delicacies.
Till a few years back, I had not tasted this Gujarati dal in our home. All the other deals like dal Palak (Spinach Dal), Instant Pot Chana Dal, Dal Bukhara , Bengali Cholar/Chana Dal/Split Chickpea Lentil were prepared, but not this Gujarati dal.
Adding jaggery or sugar to the dal was not a traditional concept in our region; however, adding a little sugar to a few vegetables was well-known because of the influence of Bengali culture.
Toor Dal /Arhar Dal/Split Pigeon Peas/Yellow lentil- Easily available in all grocery stores.
Flavorings- Ginger, Tomato, Curry Leaves, Lime juice, Cilantro freshly chopped, green chilies (optional)
Whole Spices- Fenugreek Seeds, Cumin Seeds, Black Mustard Seeds, Dry Red Chili.
Salt, turmeric, Asafoetida powder, red chili powder, Jaggery.
Instead of tamarind, I use lime juice; however, you can always use them if you like.
White rice and Jeera rice are paired with some pickle, papad, and a bowl of Gujarati dal. Roti and paratha can also be paired with the dal.
Why do we love this Dal?
It's the perfect vegetarian protein meal. Pair them with rice and some greens; that is your complete meal.
It can be made as a pot meal, simple and easy.
Vegan and gluten-free.
If you have leftovers, make Dal Dhokli out of it . You will love every bite.
How to Make Dal?
Wash dal /lentil. Take dal with water in the instant pot. Add turmeric. Take a small steel Katori and put peanuts in it. Cover with the lid. Cook on high pressure for 6 minutes. Let the steam release naturally.
For tempering, take a big pan. Add some oil. Heat the oil. Add fenugreek, cumin, Dry red chili, asafoetida powder, and black mustard seeds to the oil. Let them crackle.
Add chopped tomato, red chili powder, Curry leaves, and crushed ginger to the pan. Let the tomatoes soften a bit. Add dal and steamed peanuts to it.
Let it cook for some time. If the dal looks thick, add some hot water to it. At this point, add lime juice and jaggery. Let it simmer for a few minutes more. Add some fresh cilantro, and your dal is ready to enjoy.
Instead of steaming peanuts, you can boil the peanuts in the microwave.
For making dal in the Instant Pot
- ½ Cup Tur Dal/Arhar Dal/Split pigeon peas/Yellow Lentils
- 3 Cups Water
- ¼ Cups Peanuts
- ½ Tsp Turmeric Powder
- Salt to taste
- 2 Tbsp Cooking oil
- ¼ Tsp Cumin Seeds
- ¼ Tsp Black Mustard Seeds
- ¼ Tsp Fenugreek Seeds
- Pinch of asafoetida
- 4 Dry red Chilies
- 1 Big Ripe Tomato chopped
- 10 Fresh Curry Leaves
- 2 fresh Green Chilies (optional)
- 1 Tbsp Crushed Ginger
- 1 Tbsp Jaggery powder
- 1 Tbsp Lime Juice
- 1 Tbsp Fresh Cilantro Leaves
- Wash dal under running tap water and cook on high pressure with 3 cups of water for 6 minutes in the Instant pot . Add turmeric and salt with the dal /lentils.
- You can steam the peanuts by keeping a very small steel bowl in the Instant pot or you can separately boil the peanuts in the microwave.
- Let the steam release naturally. Remove the peanut from the instant pot.Whisk the dal with a whisker to make it smooth.
- Take a pan and add oil to it. Heat it.
- Add fenugreek seeds,cumin seeds, black mustard seeds,dry red chilies and curry leaves.Add asafoetida powder as well.Let everything crackle.
- Add chopped tomatoes and let them sweat a little.
- Furthermore , add red chili powder. Stir everything together.
- Add dal to the pot .Mix everything.
- Add jaggery and lime juice. Mix and give it a taste.
- Adjust the seasoning and garnish with fresh cilantro .
- Serve along with some hot rice and enjoy.