Lentil Dal


  • 200g urad dal
  • 670 g water
  • 1 tspn turmeric, added to the water
  • 1 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder, added to the water
  • 4 green chillies, finely chopped
  • ½ tspn asafoetida
  • 1 Tbspn cumin powder
  • 2 cm ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 tspn garam masala
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 5 tomatoes (approx), chopped – or 1 can tomatoes
  • 2 Tbspn tomato purée
  • Salt
  • 1 Tbspn ghee or butter
  • Handful fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1 red chilli, finely sliced
  • Fried shallots


  • Soak the lentils in water for two hours. Drain. Add the turmeric and chilli powder to the water. Put the lentils in a medium-large pot and pour over the 670ml spiced water. Simmer for 90 minute on a low heat.
  • When the lentils have cooked through, remove the pan from the heat and use a whisk to gently break them down. Season to your taste. Set the mixture aside.
  • In a frying pan, heat oil and add the asafoetida, cumin, green chillies, ginger & garam masala – mix well and cook for a few minutes. Add the onion – cook until well browned. Add the garlic – cooking until it just turns golden.
  • In a separate pot –  cook the tomatoes over a low heat in oil until soft. Blend to smooth
  • Add the blended tomatoes, spicy onion and tomato purée to the lentils and stir on a low heat.
  • Mix in the butter. Add salt to taste
  • Garnish with chopped fresh coriander, Fine sliced red chilli & Fried shallots

Stolen from Dishoom, London

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