Spicy Mixed Dal Soup

Visit the Indian Food Glossary for information on the ingredients in this recipe
Spicy Mixed Dal Soup

There is very little that is more comforting for the chilly weather than a combination of mixed dals combined into a thick nourishing soup with warming spices. Quick and easy to make, with the delight of sweet tamarind in the mix, those who enjoy Indian creations will not be disappointed.

Earlier in the week, London was bombarded with record amounts of snow — about 4 feet of snow in a matter of days. The city is still digging out and I continue to take refuge in my kitchen.



Spicy Mixed Dal SoupSpicy Mixed Dal Soup
Recipe by
Cuisine: Indian
Published on December 8, 2010

Simple, warming and nourishing spicy south Indian soup with toor dal and split mung beans

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  • 2-inch piece tamarind pulp
  • 1/2 cup toor dal or yellow split peas
  • 1/2 cup split mung beans
  • 1-inch piece fresh ginger, minced or grated
  • 3 green chilies, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley or cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ghee, butter or oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • large handful of fresh or dried curry leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chickpea flour (besan)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon asafetida
  • Soak the tamarind pulp in hot water for 20 to 30 minutes, then strain the liquid into a bowl, squeezing as much water from the pulp as possible. Discard the pulp.

  • Combine the toor dal or split peas, split mung beans, ginger, chilies, tomato, turmeric and salt in a large saucepan. Add the tamarind water and pour in 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes or until the dals are tender.

  • Heat the ghee, butter or oil in a small sauce pan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the cumin seeds and mustard seeds and stir for 30 to 60 seconds or until the mustard seeds turn grey and begin to splutter and pop. Add the curry leaves, chickpea flour, cayenne and asafoetida, and stir for another few minutes. Pour into the soup and let the soup simmer for another 5 minutes to blend the flavors.

  • Serve hot, garnished with chopped parsley or cilantro.

Makes 4 servings

Spicy Mixed Dal Soup

More delicious lentil recipes from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen:
Toor Dal Pumpkin Soup
Toor Dal Palak (Toor Dal & Spinach)
Mung Bean Paneer
Mung Tamarind Dal

On the top of the reading stack: Silk Road Cooking: A Vegetarian Journey by Najmieh Batmanglij

Audio Accompaniment: Tajmahal


Unknown said...

Hey, a wonderful recipe and healthy too. Feel free to send it to my MLLA # 30 event :)

Priya Suresh said...

Thick dal soup looks soo comforting..

Johanna GGG said...

wow that snow looks impressive if you don't mind never stepping out of the house - hope your cupboards are well stocked - dahl is a great soup for nourishing comfort and is easy to make from the store cupboard - this one looks lovely!

Lisa Turner said...

Thankfully, I don't have to go out and I do have a well stocked kitchen :)

Ivy said...

Looks delicious. We only get brown lentils in Greece but have to look for them in the large chain supermarkets.

Stephanie said...

Soup looks so delicious, and such a great way to warm up this time of year. Can you tell me anymore about the music, Tajmahal? After clicking the link and listening I searched but could find nothing!I would love to buy a CD, so any info is appreciated. Thanks! Peace, Stephanie

Lisa Turner said...

HI Stephanie;

I wish I could help, but I just discovered this track on an ambient site.

Thanks for dropping by.