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Dal Tadka Recipe

Published on: June 11, 2013 | Updated on: July 26, 2014
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Dal Tadka

Dal Tadka

Dal tadka is another one of the common dishes found in most of the north Indian restaurants in India and abroad. Various different lentils can be used to create dal tadka. However, I like to do it with toor/ arhar dal. It gets its name from the tadka or chaunk that gives the finishing touch to the dal changing its appearance and aroma in a matter of seconds. The tempering noise which comes during a tadka is just an experience in itself and I would assume the chaunk probably got its name with the noise the tadka makes in contact with the dal. The tadka can be made using any of the oils. However, nothing can really replace desi ghee here. Garlic cloves (lasan), onions, tomatoes, curry leaves, dry chilis, etc can all be used as desired in the tadka which definitely contains cumin seeds (jeera) or mustard seeds with heeng added to the oil/ ghee and allowed to simmer on slow flame for a few seconds before giving a final addition of red chili powder and then mixing with the prepared dal. I just love ordering this dish in restaurants, so it is amazing to create it on your own. It goes well with roti or rice. Here is the recipe.

Ingredients needed for Dal Tadka

Toor dal – 1/2 cup

Dhuli moong dal -1/4 cup

Water – 4 cup

Salt to taste

Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp

Ghee – 3 tbsp

Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp

Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp

Heeng – 1/4 tsp

Curry leaves – 1 sprig

Garlic – 3-4 cloves (chopped)

Onion – 1 and 1/2 cup (chopped)

Tomato – 1/2 cup (chopped)

Green chili – 2 (slit into halves)

Fresh coriander for garnishing

How to make Dal Tadka

Wash the dal and put it in a pressure cooker.

Add water, salt and turmeric powder

Pressure cook till dal is soft and done.

Heat 2 tbsp ghee in a heavy-bottom pan.

When the ghee is hot, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and heeng.

When the seeds starts splattering, add 1 cup onion, green chili, garlic and curry leaves.

Fry till onions are browned.

Add tomato and fry for 2 minutes.

Add red chili powder and add this tadka to the cooked dal.

Add lemon juice and mix.

Heat the remaining ghee in a pan and add the remaining onion.

Fry till onions are browned.

Sprinkle these fried onions on top of the dal.

Garnish with fresh coriander.

Serve hot with plain rice.


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I am a dental surgeon turned full time mom of a lovely boy. Apart from running around him and doing a lot of activities with him, I like to cook and experiment with new stuff.

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