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Pakistani lentil curry recipe

Pakistani lentil curry recipe

  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Main course
  • Curry

This cheap and very easy Pakistani meal is usually eaten with basmati rice, tossed salad and hot pickles. It is relatively quick to make, and tastes even better the second day.

60 people made this

IngredientsServes: 2

  • 150g dried brown lentils
  • 4 tbsp dried red lentils
  • 1L water
  • 5 whole garlic cloves
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons clarified butter (ghee)
  • 1/4 onion, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tbsp milk (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh coriander

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:40min ›Ready in:55min

  1. Soak brown and red lentils in ample cool water for 1 hour to overnight. Drain and rinse.
  2. Place drained lentils into a large saucepan or casserole. Pour in the water, then add garlic, salt, coriander, cayenne and turmeric. Bring to the boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 30 minutes.
  3. While the lentils cook, melt the clarified butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Stir in the onions, and cook, stirring often, until they turn golden brown. Stir in the cumin, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  4. Stir the onions and milk into the lentils; cook for another 6 to 8 minutes. Sprinkle with fresh coriander to serve.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(57)

Reviews in English (45)

The taste was fine, but there was way too much water left after the simmering time was complete; too much liquid to even be considered soup! I had to take the lid off and boil the extra water off, which took quite some time.-28 Jun 2011

Altered ingredient amounts.Used less cayenne pepper-28 Jun 2011

by JENNYLYN1

In constant search of cheap meal ideas, I decided to give this a try. As written, I would have to rate this a 2 because lentils don't need to be soaked before cooking and the recipe calls for too much water-the general ratio is 2 parts water to one part lentils. If I had followed the directions of the recipe, this would have been REALLY watery/liquidy and I think pretty gross. Here is what I did . I rinsed 2 cups of brown lentils and simmered them with 4 cups of water, adding more water as needed until they were cooked to the right texture (was doubling the recipe). I added 5 cloves of chopped garlic and doubled the rest of the spices, except the cayenne (too spicy for my 3 yr old). As it simmered, it smelled good but looked boring so I sauteed some shredded carrots, yellow bell pepper, and zucchini in a separate pan while I caramelized the onion (a whole one). When the lentils were done, I added the sauteed veggies and the caramelized onions to the pot and stirred it up. I served it over Basmati Rice, topped it with cilantro and it still needed something. Paneer would have been great but I didn't have it so used some white crumbly Mexican cheese on the top (feta would have been great too). The end result was amazingly delicious! I will definitely make it again-in the future, I will add more veggies, caramelize 2 onions, cut down the lentils and use veggie broth to simmer the lentils in, plus add paneer to the top. Thanks for the idea and great spice combinati-13 Jun 2007


Pakistani Daal

  • Cuisine: Indian, Pakistani
  • Course: Entree, Side Dish
  • Skill Level: Beginner, Easy, Moderate
  • Add to favorites

  • Servings : 4-6
  • Prep Time : 10m
  • Cook Time : 45m
  • Ready In : 55m

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried red lentils
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, diced
  • 1-2" ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2-1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2-3 tablespoons cooking oil
  • Salt and pepper

Method

Step 1

Heat water in pot until boiling.

Step 2

Add lentils and boil for one minute.

Step 3

Step 4

Simmer lentils until they resemble a thick paste (and the water has reduced almost completely).

Step 5

While lentils are simmering, heat oil in frying pan.

Step 6

Add onion, garlic and ginger. Fry until soft. Add curry, chili, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper, sauté for 2-3 minutes.

Step 7

Add tomatoes and sauté for another 3-5 minutes. Add fried spice mixture into lentil paste, stir and cook an additional 15-20 minutes.


Chana Dhal - Yellow Split Lentils - A Popular Curry House Side Dish

Ingredients

  • 300g dry chana dhal – soaked in water for two hours
  • 3 tablespoons ghee
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 pinch asafetida
  • 1 - 5 green/red chillies – finely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic – finely chopped
  • 3 tomatoes roughly chopped
  • 1/2 onion - finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Rinse the lentils in several changes of water and then place in a saucepan with 700ml water.
  2. Bring the water to a boil and drizzle about a tablespoon of oil on top to stop the water from foaming over the top.
  3. Skim any foam that does form. Reduce the heat and simmer until the lentils are soft - about 45 - 60 minutes. Do not strain. Allow the water to reduce down.
  4. Meanwhile, in a separate pan, melt the ghee over medium high heat. Toss in the cumin seeds, mustard seeds and asafetida. Fry for about 30 seconds and then add the chopped garlic and chilli and sprinkle with a little.
  5. Stir in the chopped onion and fry until the onion is soft and translucent.
  6. Add the chopped tomatoes, turmeric, coriander powder and cumin powder.
  7. Your channa dhal is ready when the lentils are nice and soft. You can serve it like this or do as many chefs and blend the lentils until creamy.
  8. Whisk the onion and ghee mixture into the lentils and sprinkle in the garam masala.
  9. To serve, top with a little chopped coriander and a little more garam masala if you like.

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BROWN LENTIL CURRY/WHOLE MASOOR DAL

Lentils are a common staple in South Asian cuisine. Lentils are legumes with protein, minerals and fiber. In addition to being packed with nutrition they are an inexpensive pantry must have. Most lentil recipes don’t take long to make, that’s why I usually have lentils on our menu weekly. They can also be paired with veggies or meat. I usually add a bunch of spinach for a nutrient punch for the kids. But the options are endless and these are also vegan and gluten free. This lentil curry can be paired with rice, naan, chapati and paratha.

There are many different variety of lentils. The recipe I am sharing today is Brown Lentil curry also know as Whole Masoor dal. This is the same reddish/orangish split lentil that is just whole with skin. This variety of lentils is very common and can be easily found in grocery stores. This is a great recipe to try if you are a beginner at South Asian cuisine or new to cooking altogether.

RECIPE NOTES

This lentil recipe is really very straight forward. Even if you have never made these before, I encourage you to try.

I do soak these overnight or at least few hours before, that saves cooking time. Some recipes call for boiling the lentils before, than adding to rest of ingredients. But I like to cook all the ingredients together, that makes it more creamy and thick rather than watery.

Before rinsing and soaking the lentils: put lentils in a flat plate and go thru and make sure there are no large pieces of any sort of debris. Sometimes I will find a tiny rock, that can happen in bulk ingredients. Doesn’t happen often but just check in chase.

The consistency of the lentils will be your preference. I make it a medium consistency. But once the lentils are fully cooked you can add a little more water to make it thin.

Another thing to keep in mind is cooking time may vary. That can depend on the variety of brown lentil and how old it is. I have seen packs that are lighter/darker in color and size varies too with different brands. But don’t be afraid to add more water as needed.


Pumpkin Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 Small Pumpkin — seeded, unpeeled
  • 2 Tablespoons Oil
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Seed
  • 1 Each Cardamon
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Coriander — ground
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ginger — ground
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Garlic — minced, heaping
  • 2 Cups Onion — chopped
  • 1 Cup Cauliflower Flowerets
  • 1/2 Cup Carrot — sliced
  • 11 Ounces Corn — can,undrained
  • Salt And Pepper — to taste
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Tumeric

Directions

Put oil in large pot or kettle. Heat til quite warm. Add cardamon, and cumin seeds. Cook until seeds crackle. Add Onions, garlic and powders. Saute until onions are browned. Add cut up pumpkin and water til not quite covered. Cover and simmer until pumpkin is tender. Mash or puree. Return to pot and add your choice of vegetables. Cook until desired tenderness. You can add powered broth if desired. You can also add greens and can substitute acorn or butternut squash.


Recipes of India and Pakistan

Most Westerners whenever asked exactly what food they will relate with the Indian subcontinent, will probably state 'curry', yet not necessarily just about every spiced dish is actually a curry, and curry is not merely one dish. It embraces a complete variety of dishes, each remarkably diverse in accordance to the spices and herbs used in different mixtures. Spices, imaginatively applied, tend to be the exceptional characteristic of Indian and Pakistani cuisine - subtle or pungent, hot or mild, there is something to fit each and every taste buds.

A lot of the cooking of northwestern India and Pakistan is so identical that one, would be reluctant to state which dishes belong to one country and which to the other. Pakistan, being a Muslim nation, uses no pork yet offers a diet abundant in other meats and has as many delicious biriani and pilau as does the famous Moghul cuisine of the nearby Indian provinces. Lamb is prevalent in both places, and both use spicing and ingredients such as yoghurt and ghee in food that are elaborate without being hot as well as depending more greatly on wheat-flour chapati than on rice.

Bangladesh is more than 1,500 kilometers from Pakistan. With the eastern Indian province of Bengal, of which it has been once a part, it shares much more pungent spicing, an inclination to cook in mustard oil rather than ghee and focus on a selection of seafood instead of the fat lamb favorite in northwestern India and Pakistan.

The culinary choices of southern India are diverse again. The coconut plays a powerful role, rice mostly replaces wheat, mustard seeds are extensively used as a spice, and chilies come into their own - as anyone who has handled a truly hot Madras or Mysore curry can promptly acknowledge!

All through the subcontinent, different religious beliefs impose food taboos which are strictly adhered to. Hindus will certainly not consume beef. Muslim will not consume pork. Buddhist will not take life and so will not even break an egg. And many Indians are purely vegetarian, savoring a cuisine that is in a class by itself.


How To Make Delicious Chana Dal With Lauki Sabzi Pakistani Food Recipe Step With Step Instructions:

Ingredients:

  • Lauki (Bottle gourd) 2 cups
  • Chana Dal (Split lentil) 1/2 cup
  • Finely chopped onion ( 1 medium-size)
  • Chopped tomatoes (3 medium-sizes tomatoes)
  • 1 to 2 Green Chilies, finely chopped
  • 1/2 inch of ginger, finely chopped
  • 3/4 teaspoon of Cumin Seeds
  • Turmeric Powder (1/4 teaspoon)
  • Red Chili Powder ( 1/2 teaspoon)
  • Garam Masala Powder (1/2 teaspoon)
  • 2 cup of water
  • 3 tablespoons of ghee or cooking oil
  • 1/2 cup of chopped coriander leaves
  • Salt as required

How To Cook It:

Soaking Chana Dal:

Making Lauki Chana Dal:

  • Firstly, heat the oil or ghee and add cumin seeds
  • Add the onions and saute till they become translucent.
  • Add the ginger and green chilies and saute for 10-15 seconds.
  • Now add the tomatoes and all the dry spice powders. Saute till the tomatoes soften. Keep on stirring.
  • The oil should start releasing from the onion-tomato masala.
  • Add the chopped Lauki (bottle gourd) and salt. Pour water and stir
  • Cover & cook for 20 minutes on the medium flame or until the Lauki is tender
  • If there is lots of liquid in the sabzi, then simmer without the lid to dry the liquids.

Serve Lauki chana dal hot with phulkas or roti

How to make Moong Masoor Dal?

To make this dal recipe, there are two types of lentils required. One is masoor dal also known as red/orange lentils and are basically red lentils, split and skinned. The other is moong dal also known as yellow lentils or mung beans, split and skinned. Both types of lentils should be easily available at any big supermarket, or at an Indian and Pakistani grocer.

Measure out the two types of dal in a bowl and clean them properly – remove any stones or debris and then wash the lentils. It’s not necessary to soak masoor dal or moong dal as they both quickly but I usually soak them for a few minutes till I prepare the rest of the ingredients. Heat oil in a pan, and saute ginger garlic paste and turmeric. Add the two types of lentils and cook them till they are soft. Stir vigorously with a whisk, or use a wooden spoon or an immersion blender to mash up the dal and create a smooth and chunky texture. Add more water if required at this stage, otherwise cook for a few minutes on low simmer till soft and tender.

Meanwhile, prepare the tempering on the side. Heat oil in a pan and then add the onions, garlic cloves, red chillies and cumin seeds one after the other. Pour the tempering ingredients over the dal, and mix through.


Pakistani and Punjabi people are generally meat lovers. That's why vegetarian food like sabzi and daal is often under-rated. Below is our family's favorite vegetarian recipes that I learned to cook from my mother in law who was an expert in sabzi cooking.

Tips for Sabzi making

Fresh sabzi is best

For best taste always use fresh vegetables available in the season. Ok, I know sometimes you have to blanch vegetables to keep them longer for later. And sometimes, frozen and processed vegetables are the only choice. However, you can still make it taste better by serving it freshly cooked. Unlike other Pakistani foods, sabzi tastes better when served immediately. Re-heating once or twice is ok but after that, it loses all its taste and nutrition. That's why sabzi is best consumed within 24 hours. If you love kitchen gardening to grow fresh veggies, check more info here.

Bhunofy

(Bhunofy) or searing on high until oil separate is a key to Pakistani cooking. The same applies to Sabzi recipes. Add a bit of extra oil and sear (Bhunna) vegetable curry to burn excess water on high flame for 2-3 minutes till oil separates from sides of the pot. This trick greatly elevates the taste of these sabzi recipes.

Techniques are important

For most veggies the spices and ingredients are similar. But the techniques to cook veggies like okra which gets slimy and mustard greens or bitter gourd which are bitter can be essential for good taste and texture.

Make your sabzi tasty

While many complain that veggies are bland, I must insist make them taste good. Try adding extra spice, a tiny bit of jaggery, some lemon juice or tamarind, some butter, and make it chat patta. Taste test and improve if needed like you would do for your meat dishes.

Avoid over-cooking

Veggies are delicate, overcooking makes them mushy and unappealing. One get tip that I learned is veggies have low cooking time (except sarson). Whenever I slow-cooked sabzi on low-heat, they taste absolutely finger-linking good. While high heat wouldn't let the taste develop fully the veggies tastes somewhat raw.

Most veggies are high in water so you generally do not have to add water if cooking on low heat. ( Adding few tablespoons of water is ok.) Let veggies cook in their own water and they taste best.

Smaller and organic are best

As ingredients are important, getting organic, fresh and good quality veggies can make a huge difference. This tip again, I learned from my mother in law. Check your veggies by pressing. The firm veggies are fresh. Smaller veggies are often more flavorful. Organic baby spinach, okra, clustered beans are melt in the mouth soft, and amazingly flavorful.

Most of these recipes can be served with plain rice or khichri, raita, and roti or Chapati. I also added a few salads and snacks in the post. Salads and snacks are a great way to add vegetables to the diet in form of a tasty dish that will attract kids too.

Sabzi Recipes

1. Aloo Palak Recipe (Spinach Potato Curry)

Finger-licking good aloo palak recipe with easy steps. Use organic baby spinach for best taste and do little searing to burn excess water and you are set for best aloo palak.

2. Aloo Baigan Recipe (Eggplant Potato Curry)

This sabzi recipe is a delight for eggplant lovers. The curry is so simple to make. Just dump in all ingredients and let it cook slowly. It turns out great with so little effort.

3. Bhindi Masala Recipe (Okra Curry )

Bhindi/lady's Finger / Okra gets slimy upon cooking. So, this recipe shows how to make delicious Bhindi without letting it get slimy. The secret trick is in dry roasting Okra.

4. Mix Vegetables Curry Recipe

This one is my favorite sabzi. The best thing about mix vegetable is you get different vegetable or different combo of vegetables in every bite. This make it so interesting, you enjoy eating bite after bite. The recipe is dear to my heart and delicious.

5. Karela Masala (Bitter gourd Curry)

As the name says 'bitter'. This vegetable is the love of a few for its distinct taste and some simply hate it. Regardless of its taste karela is an extremely healthy and nutritious vegetable with very few calories. This recipe also shares a trick to reduce its bitterness to an enjoyable level.

6. Sarson ka saag (Mustard Greens Curry)

Again this sabzi also has a distinct bitter taste. It tastes different from other greens and this veggie has an acquired taste. Once you develop its taste, you just can't have enough of it.

When sarson cooked in a special way and served with butter, most of its bitter flavor is undermined and it tastes like ghee as my mother-in-law called it. The 'sarsoon ka saag' can be a feast when served with fresh corn flatbread. (Makai ki roti).

7. Vegetable Biryani Recipe

If you love vegetables, give this vegetable Biryani a go unlike Biryani other biryani this is juicy. Has lots of chunky vegetables and gravy to enjoy.

8. Cauliflower Manchurian

Looking for a super hit vegetarian recipe? I bet you won’t find anything better than Gobi Manchurian. This is one of the few vegetarians recipes that can compete with a non-veg dish in taste.

9. Veg Fried Rice

Who doesn’t want an easy veg fried rice recipe that goes with almost anything? This is Pak-Chinese fried rice that uses basmati rice like any Indian fried recipe and has few Chinese touches in the form of soy sauce and sweet and sour background flavors.

10. Aloo Gobi Matar

Looking for Punjabi style, Dhaba style authentic aloo gobi matar? Here, we’ve got you all covered with a deliciously spiced curried cauliflower and potato curry to feed your hungry soul.

11. Carrot Halwa

This halwa is a winter delights as fresh, sweet and red carrots are profuse in winters. The recipe of this carrot halwa is very balanced and gives you perfect halwa that is neither too sweet nor bland. This halwa is not too heavy with ghee and khoya and has a perfect combination.

12. Lauki ki kheer

When you have had a lot of cheesy creamy desserts and you want something cooling, healthy and yummy. It’s time to make Lauki ki kheer, bottle gourd pudding.

Pakistan Vegetarian Snacks Recipes

13. Aloo ki roti

This is melt in the mouth roti. The ingredients are all staples in any desi home and you can make it quickly. Making it is slightly tricky. But thanks to the step by step recipe tutorial, it turns out great on the first attempt.

14. Corn Cheese Balls

This is a very simple recipe and can be made quickly. It is just great for young children. These corn balls are the easiest appetizer, I know. These are addictive too. What I like best about this recipe is that it doesn’t require coating with egg or bread crumbs and that’s such a relief.

15. Aloo ki Tikki

Whether a tea time snack or a side dish along with curries in a kid’s lunch box or in a sandwich Aloo Tikki is so forgiving and humble, they adjust in any meal. Honestly, I should tell you how to not eat a lot of these!

16. Batata Vada

This is the best Batata Vada recipe, I claim that. I know the word best is different for everyone but trust me these are so so good. And this recipe came out after a lot of testing.

17. Potato Cheese Balls

Finally, I have a perfect recipe for Indian style delicious potato cheese balls with crispy coating melting cheese oozing through it. Pair it with ketchup or mayo garlic sauce and you’ll love it

Pakistani Vegeterian Salad Recipes

18. Aloo Raita

A thick Potato raita can quench your cravings for South Asian chaat too. The ingredients are really simple and this salad can easily be altered to suit your taste. Although, I advice stick to the original version. Kids also love this salad.

19. Spinach Corn Salad

This spinach corn salad with yogurt is served chilled. And the crispy chilled spinach leaves paired with corn’s sweetness was delightful. Any salad lover would find this salad interesting especially when there is no cream, cheese, or mayonnaise and it is still yummilicious.

20. Boondi Raita

Ok, these are very much like Dahi bara, but what makes these special is instead of soaking boondi in the water you directly add them in yogurt, the crunchy boondi, along with sweet yogurt, crunchy onion, and potatoes are an absolute delight and treat in the mouth.

Pakistan Lentil Recipes

A round of Pakistan vegetarian recipes is incomplete without daal and gram flour recipes. I intend to add more delicious daal recipe to this roundup, I have just but delicious and easy recipes below.

Tips for Daal Making

Daal making is an absolute art and below tip will definitely add to your culinary skills.

Soaking: Soaking can really help quick cooking of dal as well making more tender. Another reason for soaking is that it also helps unlock few nutrients that are bounded by natural compounds. Also, pulses have different soaking times. Soaking in warm water can quicken the process. Alway discard the soaking water and use water to cook daal.

Use Fresh daal: This tip might sound strange. Fresh lentils get tender easily unlike old ones. Always try to buy lentil from a shop were stock keep rotating quickly. And similar get fresh monthly stock of lentils rather than storing for months.

Freezer friendly: Lentil are freezer friendly unlike veggies and so you can also store leftovers in freezer.

No leftovers: In this roundup, I've added a leftover dal paratha recipe too. you can use any dal to make this paratha and they super delicious. Hence you can safely say daal doesn't have to waste.

Smoking: You can mix soupy daal with rice and/or roti bites. Smoke it with red hot charcoal and serve with lemon pickle. A popular way to enjoy loads of daal.

Cooking friendly: Unlike other food, daal is super humble food. You may slow cook or pressure cook. I usually prefer, dumping all ingredients in a pot with soaked daal and pressure cook it in a regular cooker or instant pot. then temper it way aromatic spices and garlic. So easy, so good.

21. Masoor dal

Masoor lentil pairs best with zeera rice or any Indian bread like chapati, roti or naan. Further, you can add some yoghurt and kachumber salad on the side and you are set for a comfortable lunch.

22. Mung Masoor dal

Enjoy an easy, hearty lentil curry with rice and fresh salad to make a most comfy meal.

23. Leftover Daal ka paratha

As dal is ready just add onion, chilies, chaat masala to enhance flavors add wheat flour to make dough and you are ready to roll out soft and delicious paratha. Kids and grown ups both will love this hot and tasty treat.

24. Pakora Kadhi

Who can resist a warm bowl of aromatic, light, and fluffy Pakora curry? And when the most popular Indian dumpling AKA Pakora gets soaked in it, you get a pillowy ball drenched in flavors ready to melt in your mouth.


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