Category Archives: Dals, Lentils.

Tomato dal

Tomato dal is an effortless and appetizing main course dish. This is a very common and basic preparation in Andhra cuisine. The combination of tomatoes and dal gives a wonderful flavor to the dish. When you are in a dilemma about making curries, this is an easy dish to fall back. This dish, with a dollop of ghee in hot rice along with avakkai pickle makes a lip smacking combination.


  • Toor dal boiled- 1cup
  • Tomatoes- 3 nos
  • Onion- 1no
  • Green Chilies- 2nos
  • Turmeric powder- 2tsp
  • Red chilly – 1tsp
  • Oil- 1tbsp
  • Mustard seeds- 1tsp
  • Curry leaves- few
  • Salt- as per taste
  • Pinch of Hing
  • 1 &1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • Wash and cut the tomatoes into medium size pieces. Wash yellow lentil with plenty of water. Boil it and let it rest for a while. Cook till 3 whistles. Turn off the flame and wait until the pressure go off.Heat a non-stick pan, add oil.Once oil is heated add mustard seeds. Let them splutter than add hing,ginger-garlic paste,  onion.Saute  until onions are slight golden brown.Now put the chopped tomatoes, yellow lentil, turmeric, chopped green chillies and two cups of water in the non-stick pan. Let it cook for 5 mins than add salt, chopped coriander leaves. Let cook on a medium flame for about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat. Heat oil in a pan for seasoning and add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Let them splutter. When they start to splutter add red chilli, hing and curry leaves. And stir for another few seconds. Remove from the flame and pour over the cooked tomato dal. Mix well and serve with hot steamed rice or roti.

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Spinach Dal Recipe

Toor dal is an important staple lentil  in the Indian diet, it is also healthy, nutritious and rich in protein. We prepare a lentil using various combinatin of dal & vegetable.This recipe is one of such combination – Toor dal and Spinach, both are nutritious and high in protein. This is very useful for entertaining last minitue guests and can be made in less time.

Ingredients :-

  1. Toor Dal – 1cup                                               
  2. Spinach – 100 grm chopped
  3. Tamarind – Small Lemon size
  4. Tomato – 1 chopped
  5. Onion – 1 chopped
  6. Turmeric Powder – 1/4tsp
  7. Green chillies – 6 chopped
  8. Garlic – few cloves (peeled)
  9. Mustard Seeds
  10. Curry Leaves
  11. Coriander
  12. Oil – 2 tsp
  13. Water

Servings :- For 4

Cooking Time : 45 minutes

How to Prepare:-

  • Cook Dal and chopped Vegetables (Spinach, Onion, tomato, green chillies) in pressure cooker. Ensure dal and vegetables are placed in seperate vessels while cooking. Allow pressure cooker to whistle 4 to 5 times so that dal will gets cooked

  • Parallelly soak tamarind in water
  • Once steam is released from cooker, mix dal and vegetables in one container,& smash well. Add salt, turmeric powder, tamarind juice and cook in low flame (add required water depends on consistency) for 6 minutes and keep aside. Before taking dal out of flame add coriander leaves and close the lid.
  • Heat oil in pan. Then add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, garlic cloves and curry leaves. Allow mustard seeds to crackle and garlic cloves to turn light brown color.  Add this as atempering on the cooked dal.

That’s it, Spinach Dal is ready to be served.

How to serve:-

  • Telugu people have this especially with white rice along with mango pickle (avakaya). Followed with rasam rice and curd rice. Wow…. wonderful meals!!!!
  • You can have with rice flour roti (will soon upload how to prepare this). This is also excellent combination.

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Tomato Rasam

I remember my granny’s rasam, fresh made masala with the Channa dal broth… what an aroma, still fills my memories. After granny, i would rate my friend Revathy 2nd for the ”Tomato Rasam chief award”. Obviously granny holds 1st.Me & srenuka die to eat her rasam.She is her version of tomato rasam.

What you need

1) 2 medium size tomato

2) Few curry leaves

3) Mustard seeds

4) Soaked tamarind in water.You can use a small lemon size tamarind, soak it water( 1 cup of water) for 10 mins. Squeeze out the tamarind–the remaining water is of our use.

5) Boiled Toor dal with toor dal broth.

6) 3 tsp rasam powder

7) 1/2 tsp salt

How to do it

—Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Add mustard seeds, allow to splutter than add asafoetida + curry leaves+chopped tomato. Satue for 3 mins or till the tomato’s gets cooked.

—Add tamarind water & let it boil till the raw smell goes off.This is one of the important step to ensure you don’t let tamarind dominate the taste of rasam. Rasam is combination of tomato, tamarind water & rasam powder, neither of them should dominate the taste. If you don’t boil enough you may end up eating a tamarind chutney/tamarind pulp instead of rasam.

— Once the raw smell goes off, add 4 tsp boiled toor dal & toor dal broth.Avoid using water. If you substitute the broth with water you may not get the same flavour,broth adds more flavour to rasam than a bland water.

—Add rasam powder,salt (home-made) or bought from store & let it boil for few minutes.Sprinkle curry leaves on top just before taking off the heat.

Do a taste test & add if anything necessary.

P.S:-The rasam powder used contains red chilli powder, turmeric & all other masala.

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Toor dal

At times u don’t want to have elaborate dinner, simple dal & rice solves the purpose. Here is my simple version of dal.

Servers:- 2 with rice


1) 1 cup cooked toor dal in pressure cooker

2) small opinion about 10

3) 2 medium tomatoo

3) Few Curry leaves

4) 2 green chillies

5) Lot of coriander leaves -washed & chopped

6) Mustard seeds

7) Cumin seeds

8) coriander powder

9) Salt to taste

10) 1 tsp of oil

11) 1/2 tsp turmeric powder


—Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Add Mustard seeds, after they have finished crackling add cumin seeds, turmeric powder,chopped green chilli.

—In a South Indian grocery story u would get these small onions, i have developed a recent liking for the same.Its v tedious job to clean these onions. In my case i hand it over to my husband, who does shows his irritation but manages cleaning them with his fav new channels.In case few you dont get these small onions you can subsitute with our regular chopped onions. Add onion & sauté it for few minutes.

—Add chopped tomatoes & fry till the tomatoes becomes sluggish

—Add the boiled dal

— For taste buds sake, add salt , coriander powder & little water

— Let this dal boil for 5 mins on slow flame

—Coriander leaves adds a lovely flavour to the dals,add the chopped coriander leaves & let the dal boil for 15 mins on slow flame.

Your yummy dal is ready to be served with rice.

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