Home Mains Dhal Recipe (Dal, Dahl)


A protein-packed meal that is usually served over rice, Dhal is a staple food throughout the Indian subcontinent. Usually made with red lentils, one can also use split peas or split mung beans. Simple as boiling water (and then some).


  • I cup red lentils, yellow or green split peas or split mung
  • 3 cups (72.5m1) water
  • 5 tablespoons oil
  • 4 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon hot green chilies, chopped and seeded (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon each of ground cumin and ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric


Cook the lentils, split peas, or mung beans in water until mushy (about 45 mins - 1 hour). Meanwhile, heat the oil in a frying pan and add the mustard seeds. When these begin to pop, add the cumin seeds and sauté briefly, being careful not to let them burn. Add the chopped chilies (if using), salt, ground coriander, ground cumin and turmeric to the frying pan. Saute the spice mix briefly to release the flavors. Mix the fried spices into the (nearly boiled now) lentils (or whatever you chose to use) and stir it together. Serve over rice. Ohmmmmmm.......

Additional Tips

This dish is a staple in my home, I understand its been a staple for a large majority of humanity for many years. Make it a staple of yours! Cooking dal eventually becomes a personal thing in that no two people make dal the same way. Feel free to vary the spices in this dish as well the consistency. When it comes to the type of pulse used for the dal I usually always use red lentils, they are the best.


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