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chef-silvano-braga-recipes-Lentil Dhal With flavourful Tarka

Lentil Dal with flavorful Tarka

Explore my Lentil Dhal With flavourful Tarka recipe, a culinary masterpiece harmonizing red lentils with aromatic spices to form a flavorful tarka. Dive into a world of rich textures and savory sensations of the Indian cuisine that will elevate your dining experience. Perfect for cozy nights or gatherings, this recipe promises a memorable taste adventure. I love it as a part of my breakfast.

Total Time
40 min
Simple & Professional Tasty Recipes

Ingredients for 4 – 6 Servings

  • For The Dhal
    250g red lentils, rinsed and drained
    1 liter water
    1 onion, finely chopped
    2 tomatoes, chopped
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated
    1 teaspoon turmeric powder
    1 teaspoon cumin powder
    1 teaspoon coriander powder
    1/2 teaspoon chili powder (adjust to taste)
    Salt, to taste
    Fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

    For Tarka:
    2 tablespoons vegetable oil
    1 teaspoon cumin seeds
    1 teaspoon mustard seeds
    1-2 dried red chilies
    1 sprig curry leaves

Total Time

  • Preparation Time
    10 min
  • Cooking Time
    30 min

Goes Great with

    1. In a large pot, combine the red lentils and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until lentils are tender and cooked through, about 20-25 minutes. Skim off any foam that rises to the top.
    2. While the lentils are cooking, heat vegetable oil in a separate pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds, mustard seeds, dried red chilies, and curry leaves. Let them splutter and become aromatic, stirring occasionally.
    3. Add chopped onions to the pan and sauté until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes. Add minced garlic and grated ginger, cook for another 2 minutes until fragrant.
    4. Stir in the chopped tomatoes, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, and chili powder. Cook until the tomatoes are soft and the oil starts to separate, about 5-7 minutes.
    5. Once the lentils are cooked, add the prepared tarka mixture to the lentil pot. Season with salt according to taste. Mix well and let it simmer for another 5 minutes to meld the flavors together.
    6. Garnish the lentil dhal with fresh cilantro / coriander  leaves.
    7. Serve hot with rice or naan.
    Pro Tips
    • Perfect Lentils: Rinse lentils thoroughly before cooking to remove excess starch, ensuring a smooth dhal consistency.
    • Tarka Magic: Allow the tarka ingredients to sizzle and release their aroma, infusing the dish with authentic flavors.
    • Spice Level: Adjust chili powder according to your spice preference; for milder dhal, reduce the amount or omit it entirely.
    • Leftovers Upgrade: Dhal tastes even better the next day; the flavors intensify, making it an ideal make-ahead dish for busy schedules.


Calories per Serving: Approximately 300 calories

Goes Great with