Masoor Dal Tadka Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Dal
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 8
  • 1 cup masoor dal (red lentils)
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • ¼ tsp sugar or jaggery (optional)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
For tempering
  • 2 tsp ghee or oil
  • ½ tsp black mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • ½ cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic
  • 3-4 dry red chillies
  • A few curry leaves
  • ½ tsp hing or asafoetida
  • ½ cup chopped ripe tomato
  1. Wash and soak the dal for 1-2 hours. One hour should be sufficient, but leave it a bit longer if you have time
  2. In a heavy-bottomed pan, add enough water to cover the dal by two inches and bring to boil
  3. Add turmeric powder and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the lentils are cooked soft
  4. Cook covered on very low heat to speed up the process
  5. Once the dal is cooked, mash it with the back of a spoon and add more water to bring to the right consistency
  6. In the meantime, prepare the rest of the ingredients, chop the onion, garlic, and tomatoes
For tempering
  1. Heat the ghee and add mustard seeds and cumin
  2. When the mustard seeds pop and the cumin seeds sizzle, add the onions
  3. Fry until the onions turn soft and then add garlic and red chillies
  4. When the garlic turns a light brown and the onions start to brown, add curry leaves and hing
  5. Fry for another minute or so or until the onions turn a golden brown
  6. Now add the tomatoes, salt, and sugar (if using)
  7. Cook until the tomatoes turn soft (around 4-5 minutes) and add to the cooked dal
  8. Mix well and add lime juice. Test for salt levels and add more as needed
  9. Serve hot with rice and any curry
Recipe by Edible Garden at