Dal Tadka Recipe


Dal Tadka is an easy and delicious tempered gravy prepared using tur dal (pigeon peas), tomatoes, chilies, and some basic Indian spices.

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dal tadka in a white bowl served on a white plate with brown rice

Tur/toor dal is also known as arhar dal, yellow split peas, or pigeon peas.  

Lentils have been a staple ingredient in most Indian kitchens.

Ask me one food item that I can eat nearly every day. Without a doubt, it would be the most comforting “dal” with a bowl of steamed rice, a generous amount of ghee, and some pickles.

This warming and nutritious food was my path to recovery when I fell sick as a kid.

dal tadka in a white bowl served on a white plate with brown rice

Moreover, Lentils are an excellent source of protein and nourishment for a vegetarian and vegan diet.

They are widely cooked in almost every Indian household in different tastes and variations.

My dal tadka recipe is one of the quickest yet filling dishes made with simple ingredients to soothe your bellies.

Indian households use Toor dal or pigeon pea while cooking dal tadka.

However, you have a wide range of lentils to choose from, like Moong dal, Chana dal, or masoor dal (red lentils).

Pick your favorite dal before you make any dal recipe.

What is Dal tadka in India?

Dal refers to “lentils,” and tadka means “tempering or seasoning of the dal.

The tempering is usually done with ghee or oil, along with whole or ground spices such as cumin (jeera) seeds, Mustard (rai) seeds, curry leaves, dry red chilly, and chopped garlic.

A little chopped cilantro or coriander works well for garnishing.

The ingredients mentioned in this recipe are readily available online or you may find them at any Indian grocery store.

Cooking Instructions

1. Add 01 cup of dal to a pressure cooker or a saucepan.

dal placed in a pressure cooker

2. Then rinse your dal thoroughly under running water 3 to 4 times until the water runs clear.

dal sumberged with water in a pressure cooker

3. Add 02 cups of fresh water along with 01 chopped tomato, 02 green chilies, ¼ tsp turmeric powder, and ¼ tsp salt.

If using a pressure cooker, cook for three whistles on medium heat. If cooking on a saucepan, cook for 10-15 minutes on high heat.

Dal with tomatoes,chillies and water

4. After three whistles in a pressure cooker or 20 minutes on a saucepan, check the dal it should be cooked well and look like this(soft and mushy).

Steamed dal

5. Heat 1 tbsp oil or ghee in a small pan to make the tempering.

Oil for tempering dal

6. Add ¼ tsp mustard seeds; when it starts spluttering, add ¼ tsp cumin seeds.

mustard and cumin seeds added in hot oil

7. Next add the 5-6 curry leaves and 1 tsp chopped garlic. (Make sure the flame is low while tempering; otherwise, the contents may burn)

curry leaves and garlic added in hot oil

8. Then add 02 dried red chilies(optional) and ¼ tsp red chilly powder. The tempering should smell aromatic, Switch off the flame.

2 whole red chillies and red powder added in hot oil

9. Next, add the tempering to the dal and mix well. Cook for one minute so that the tempering mixes well with the dal. According to the texture you need, You may also thin the dal by adding some hot water.

tempering being poured in the dal

10. Garnish and serve hot with a bowl of steamed rice, naan, and some crackers.

Recipe card

Dal Tadka

SLICES OF LIME
Dal tadka is an easy and delicious tempered indian gravy prepare out of pigeon peas , tomatoes, chilies and some basic spices.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup toor dal also known as pigeon peas, yellow split peas
  • 2 green chillies use more or less as per your taste
  • 1 medium size tomato
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • ¼ tsp salt

For Tempering

  • 1 tbsp oil or ghee
  • ¼ tsp mustard seeds
  • ¼ tsp cumin seeds
  • 5-6 curry leaves
  • 1 tsp garlic finely chopped
  • 2 whole dried red chilies optional
  • ¼ tsp red chilly powder

Instructions
 

  • Add 01 cup dal to a pressure cooker or a saucepan.
  • Rinse the dal thoroughly 3-4 times until the water runs clear.
  • Add 2 cups of fresh water along with 1 medium size chopped tomato, 2 green chilly, ¼ tsp turmeric powder, ¼ tsp salt. If using a pressure cooker, cook for three whistles on medium heat. If cooking on a saucepan, cook for 10-15 minutes on high heat.
  • The dal should be soft and mushy.

For Tempering

  • Heat 1 tbsp oil in a small pan.
  • Add ¼ tsp mustard seeds, ¼ tsp cumin seeds and let it splutter. (low flame)
  • Next add 5-6 curry leaves, 1 tsp chopped garlic. (Make sure the flame is low othewise the contents may burn)
  • Then add 2 dried red chilly (optional), ¼ tsp red chilly powder. the tempering should smell aromatic, switch off the flame.
  • Pour the tempering over the dal and cook the dal for one minute.
  • Garnish and serve with a bowl of steamed rice, naan and some crackers.
Keyword Dal tadka,, How to cook lentils, Tur dal