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July 21, 2011

Dal Panchratan / Pancharatni (Dal Curry with Five Lentil Types)

Dal or lentil curry is my go-to dish when my vegetable tray looks empty and I need a quick-fix lunch or dinner. Both TH and I love it with roti and if I am in no mood to mix, roll, and cook up rotis, I just make an easy jeera rice (please ignore the pictures in that jeera rice post. kthanx) and we are good to go.

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What's better than a simple dal tadka or dal makhani? Dal Pancharatni! Panchratan means five jewels and in this particular recipe we use a mix of five different types of dal or lentils. A dal cannot get more interesting than that!

dal panchratan / five lentils recipe

I got a bag of mixed dal from a  supermarket in Delhi when I was there last. This makes the job of making panchratan dal so much easier because otherwise you'd have to buy the dal separately. I haven't seen this in Singapore though.

dal panchratan / five lentils recipe

Dal Panchratan / Pancharatani Recipe
Serves 2-4

Ingredients:
4 tbsp chana dal (split Bengal gram)
1/4 cup tuvar (arhar) dal
1/4 cup moong dal (split green gram)
3 tbsp urad dal (whole black lentils)
1/4 cup masoor dal (split red lentil)
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 large tomato, pureed
1 large onion, ground to a paste
1" piece of ginger, grated
3 cloves of garlic
1 tsp red chilli powder
Salt to taste

For tempering:
2 tsp ghee (or oil)
1/2 tsp jeera / cumin seeds
1/4 tsp mustard seeds (optional)
A few curry leaves

How I Made It:

1. Pressure cook the mixed dal (lentils) with 5 cups water and the turmeric powder for 4-5 whistles or until the dal is cooked mushy. Alternately, bring the dal and water mixture to a boil and simmer on low heat until cooked. This will take between 45 mins to an hour.

2. Heat oil for tempering in a kadai (that's big enough to hold everything) and add the ingredients in the given order. Let the cumin seeds splutter and turn brown and the mustard seeds (if using) pop. Next, add the ginger and garlic and fry for a minute.

3. The onion paste and red chilli powder go in next. Cook until the paste is fried to a ligher colour (about 3-4 mins). Next, add the pureed tomato and salt. Mix well and let it simmer for another 3-4 mins.

4. Finally, add the cooked dal, mix well and simmer for 5 mins until all the flavours have blended. Check salt.

dal panchratan / five lentils recipe

Best served hot with roti or lightly flavoured pulao / pilaf.