Tarka Dal (version 1) Recipe - Serves 4

Tarka Dal (version 1) Recipe

410 calories each serving (608 calories if eating with rice)

Taste Rating = 7.5     Heat Rating = Medium


225g (8 oz) split red and polished lentils
1 teaspoon (5ml) salt
5 tablespoons (75ml) vegetable oil
2 medium onions, peeled and finely chopped
1 teaspoon (5ml) cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon (2.5ml) turmeric
6 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2 tablespoons (30ml) masala paste
2 teaspoons (10ml) garam masala


Rinse the lentils a few times then soak them in water for 4 hours
Drain the lentils
Remove any grit from the lentils
Add 5 cups (1.25L or 44 fl oz) of water to a large saucepan
Bring the water to the boil
Add the lentils and salt to the water and mix well, bring the water to a simmer, reduce the heat a little and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring frequently, taking care not to burn the lentils as the liquid reduces (remove and discard any scum that forms)
Put the cooked lentils to the side with a cover on the pan to keep them hot
Heat 2 tablespoons (30ml) vegetable oil over a medium to high heat and fry the onion until it is well browned (about 15-18 minutes) - set aside for later use
Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons (45ml) of vegetable oil and stir-fry the cumin seeds and turmeric for 30 seconds
Add the garlic and stir-fry for 1 minute
Add most of the fried onion (about 3/4 of the onion) and the curry masala paste and mix well - remove from the heat when the mixture is simmering
Add the mixture and the garam masala to the cooked lentils and mix well
Serve hot (on rice or in a bowl by itself), using the remaining fried onions as a garnish

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Recipe submitted on 7 June 2007

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