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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Homestyle Dal ~ Ghar ki Dal ~ Indian Style Lentil Curry

Homestyle Lentil Curry ~ Ghar Ki Dal

A simple and comforting homestyle lentil curry with minimal spices and loads of warm flavors to pair with steamed rice or rotis. 

Homestyle Dal ~ Ghar ki Dal ~ Indian Style Lentil Curry
Ghar Ki Dal

Even though this dal sounds very basic and plain but for each and every one of us, nothing is more special than the childhood memories attached to the home food. At some point, we all miss the 'Ghar Ka Khana' and really crave for it. Especially those who are away from their homes, or those newly wedded brides who want to impress their loved ones and going to a restaurant might not satisfy the desire of comforting home food.

I am talking about the food cooked by our mothers and grandmothers who not only excel in cooking but also very good at intensifying the flavors of the dishes with lots and lots love. For me nothing can replace this kind of food and 'Ghar Ki Dal' is one among them.

Homestyle Dal ~ Ghar ki Dal ~ Indian Style Lentil Curry ~ Toor Dal
Ghar Ki Dal

I grew up with the memories of this dal which was prepared almost every day with rice and a side dish which kept changing of course. This mundane affair of having dal every day never made me lose interest in it, and apparently, it was the only dish which made the meal look complete.

When I was newly married, as I have mentioned before that I did not know much about daily cooking. And to my surprise, I was not confident enough to prepare a basic dal, mainly because of the fear of using a pressure cooker. I dreaded that cooker might just burst open like a bomb, and as soon as I kept the cooker on the flame I would run away from the kitchen and peep from a corner as it whistled away. I struggled a bit to get that precision and the right consistency, and with few attempts, I could manage to cook up a decent meal.

This is why I have decided to make a video of this rustic and traditional dal and that no one suffers like I did during my initial days of cooking. And by the way, preparing a very good grandmother style dal is an art and not everyone knows how to prepare it well.

On this note, I would like to mention some of the guidelines on using a Pressure cooker in a safe way so that you can enjoy cooking dishes in less time.

Tips for using a pressure cooker in a safe way:

  1. Make sure that you have enough of water before placing the lid. (ie at least an inch over the food)
  2. The water should not exceed 2/3rd of the capacity of the pressure cooker.
  3. Avoid keeping the pressure cooker on high heat. By doing this you might lose all the flavors. Start cooking on medium heat and as soon as you hear the hissing sound, lower the heat and cook till it whistles.
  4. After washing the cooker, place the lid gasket in the freezer. By doing this you can increase its durability and use it for a long time with safety.
  5. Always place a lemon peel if boiling potatoes which will keep the cooker from changing color from inside.
  6. Before opening the lid, wait for the pressure to drop, pour some cold water over the lid and open the lid in such a way that the steam is not in your direction.
  7. Empty the contents into another vessel as soon as you finish cooking. Do not use it as a serving dish. The more you keep reheating the curry in a cooker, the more difficult it gets to wash it. And also the cooker should be kept handy to be used for cooking other dishes.  

Homestyle Dal ~ Ghar ki Dal ~ Indian Style Lentil Curry
Toor Dal ~ Dal Tadka

You can watch a quick video here

Homestyle Dal ~ Ghar ki Dal ~ Indian Style Lentil Curry

A very simple and easy dal recipe for all the beginners who miss the homestyle food or 'Maa ke haath ka khana'.

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes
1 cup = 250 ml capacity
Serves 5


3/4 cup Toor Dal
1 onion chopped
1 tomato chopped
1 teaspoon chopped ginger
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
2 green chilies
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt

For Tadka:
3 cloves of garlic sliced
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
4 dry red chilies
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
6 curry leaves
1/2 teaspoon hing powder (asafoetida)
4 tablespoon cooking oil

For Garnish
1/2 cup chopped coriander leaves
1 tablespoon ghee (clarified butter)


1. In a pressure cooker, add washed and drained dal. To this add chopped onion, tomato, green chilies, cumin seeds, chopped ginger, and chopped garlic. Add 3 cups of water along with 2 tablespoon cooking oil and place the lid. Cook according to the timing of the pressure cooker, mine cooks in 20 to 25 minutes.
2. After releasing the pressure, open the lid safely and with help of a whisk, blend the cooked dal till it gets thicker and creamy. Transfer the lentils to another vessel and add turmeric powder, salt, and lemon juice. Cook on low heat for 5 minutes or till it starts to boil.
3. In a small pan, heat cooking oil or ghee. When it is hot, add mustard seeds and cook for a minute or till it stops spluttering. Then add sliced garlic and cook till it slightly changes color. Now add rest of the tadka ingredients and pour over the cooked dal. Garnish with ghee and chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with steamed rice.

You might also like:

Khatti Dal

Dal Makhani

Dhaba Style Dal Tadka

Dal Panchratan

Chana Dal Masala

Black Chana Curry

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree to you... getting dal right is an art in itself! Everybody says, "Huh, what's with dal?" but making it so lipsmacking is definitely a talent... your ghar ki dal looks really tempting... an d thank you for all those tips...