Dal Dhokli

Summer seems to have arrived before time this year. It is unseasonably warm. One feels like simple, low oil meals. Discs of spicy dough cooked in lentil soup, Dal Dhokli makes for a wholesome bowl of joy. It is quick and simple to make too!
Thinking about it made me wonder how this came to be first made. I have a feeling that in the good old no-refrigerator days, a housewife may have been left with some excess chapatti dough and dal. And she came up with this brilliant idea of rolling and cutting small diamonds or discs of dough and boiling them with the dal. Voila! It is made with a mixture of dhuli and chhilke waali moong dal in Rajasthan and with toor dal in Gujrat and Maharashtra. It is made with a dash of the black Goda Masala in Maharashtra and called Varan Phala. Thanks to my friend Kirti Tabib’s delicious looking Varan Phala post, I was tempted to make this the very same day!  I made it using Kirti’s recipe with quite a few inputs from my friends Ruchita and Pragya.Thanks girls.

For the dal

½ cup of toor daal (pigeon pea lentils) or a mixture of husked and dehusked moong lentils (dhuli aur chhilke waali moong dal)
2 cups of water
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp turmeric/haldi powder

Pressure cook all of the above. Let cool and mash well.

While the dal cooks, prepare the dough for dhokli.
2  cup whole wheat dough/aata
2 tbsp gram flour/besan
2 tbsp rice flour
¾  tsp salt
¼ tsp turmeric/haldi powder
½ tsp coriander/dhaniya powder
½ tsp red chilli powder/lal mirch powder
2 tbsp oil
2 tsp ghee
A pinch of sugar
A handful of fresh coriander, chopped fine
1 large green chilli, chopped fine
½ tsp ginger, minced
1 tsp carom seeds/ajwain

Mix all the listed ingredients and knead into a dough. Keep covered till the dal is done.
For making Dal Dhokli
1 Tbsp Oil
¼ tsp asafoetida/heeng
½ tsp cumin/jeera
A pinch of mustard seeds/rai
5-6 cloves/laung
1 inch piece of cinnamon/dalchini
½ tsp salt
½ tsp red chilli powder
½ tsp coriander powder
¼ tsp cumin powder
¼ tsp Maharashtrian Goda masala (optional)
1 medium tomato,chopped fine
1 large green chilli, a small piece of ginger and 3 cloves of garlic, ground coarse
1 tbsp tamarind pulp (skip if making with moong dal. Use lemon juice instead)
A small piece of jaggery/gud (or as per the desired sweetness)
8-10 curry leaves (skip if making with moong dal)

In a large kadai or heavy bottomed pan, heat oil and add cinnamon,cloves, asafoetida, cumin and mustard seeds.
Add curry leaves, the coarsely ground green chilli, ginger and garlic mixture and the dry spices (salt,red chilli powder, turmeric powder,coriander powder and goda masala)
Add tomatoes and cook till the tomatoes are pulpy.

Add the boiled dal and 4 cups of water.
Take a lemon sized ball from the dhokli dough, roll out as thick as a chapatti and cut dhokli into desired shapes- diamonds or discs.
Drop the dhokli into boiling dal and cook stirring in between for fifteen minutes.
The dhokli floats to the top when done. Taste for doneness. It should not taste doughy.

Once done, squeeze some lemon juice, top with fresh green coriander and serve hot.
Enjoy 😀


A Simple Dal

A simple daal with the flavours and aroma of asafetida and cumin. This no garlic-tomato-onion lentil soup works equally well with chapati, rice and with the very popular baked wheat cake from Rajasthan – baati.
Very simple to make and full of earthy flavours,this is a three lentil mix. I use moong, urad and chana daals.

To be boiled in the pressure cooker

Dhuli yellow moong daal/split and husked green gram- ½ cup
Dhuli urad daal/split and husked black gram- ¼ cup
Dhuli chana daal/split chickpea or bengal gram- ¼ cup
Salt- 1 tsp
Turmeric powder- ¼ tsp
Water- 2 cups

For the chaaunk/baghhar/tempering
Ghee/clarified butter- 1 Tbsp
Asfaetida/ heeng- ½ tsp
Cumin/jeera – 1 tsp
Ginger, grates- 1 tsp
Green chilli, chopped- 1 tsp (increase or reduce as per preference)
Red chili powder/lal mirch- ½ tsp

Fresh coriander , chopped – 2 Tbsp
Lemon juice- 1 tsp

Soak the daals for 30 minutes.
The small yellow lentils are dhuli moong/ split and husked green gram.
The large yellow lentils are dhuli chana/split bengal gram
The white lentils are dhuli urad/split and husked black gram (also used to make vadas)
Pressure cook with the salt and turmeric till tender

For the tempering, heat the ghee and add the heeng and jeera. Add the ginger and chilli and stir for half a minute. Take off the heat and add the red chili powder immediately. Stir and add to the cooked dal. Add the lemon juice and mix well.
Top with the chopped coriander and serve hot!

IMG_20140718_185447_wmSeen here with baati dunked in it- the best way to enjoy a ghee soaked baati. It is as good with steamed rice or a hot chapati/fulkaa!