Pachmela Dal

I do not often make dals. Mainly because they are bland and do not pair well with rice. But, they go extremely well with Indian flat-breads. Since I have rice in the afternoon and a palaharam (dosa, idli, roti…) for dinner, the wet dish to accompany both meals is always a problem. The ones that go with rice do not pair with the palaharams. So, as a compromise, I decided to alternate the South India wet dishes (sambar, rasam, vathal kuzhambu…) with the North Indian dals. A happy compromise indeed. Since then, I have been experimenting with various dals – and this Pachmela dal of Rajasthan is absolutely delicious!

3 tbsp green gram (sabut moong, pachai parupu)
3 tbsp yellow split mung (moong dal, pasi parupu)
3 tbsp pigeon peas (arahar dal, thuvaram parupu)
3 tbsp Bengal gram (chana dal, kadalai parupu)
1/2 tsp turmeric powder (haldi powder, manjal podi)
1 tsp cumin seeds (sabut jeera, jeeragam)
A pinch of asafoetida (hing, perunkayam)
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds (methi dhana, venthiyam)
1/2 tsp caraway seeds (kalonji, karunjeeragam)
1 tsp finely chopped ginger
1 tsp coriander powder (dhania powder, kothamali podi)
1/2 tsp chilli powder (mirchi powder, milagai podi)
1 tsp dried mango powder (amchur, mangai podi)
1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
Salt to taste
Cook the green gram, yellow split mung, pigeon peas and Bengal gram with a little salt and turmeric powder till well blended and thin pouring consistency
Set aside
Heat a wok and add cumin seeds, asafoetida, fenugreek and caraway seeds
When the seeds begin to splutter, add the ginger and saute till the ginger is a golden colour
Add the coriander powder, chilli powder and dried mango powder
Add the cooked lentils
Mix well
Bring to boil, then reduce flame and simmer for 10 minutes
Remove from flame and garnish with coriander leaves
Serve hot with red/brown rice or Indian flat breads

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