Quick and Easy Lemon Urad Dal

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Quick and Easy Lemon Urad Dal

Sometimes of all the legumes that I have stocked in my pantry, I crave split dals. I appreciate the substance they add to mixed dal dishes and soups. Those times when I feel like a brothy soup, I sometimes add just a few small handfuls to fill out a soup with more protein and substance. And then there are particular dishes that really highlight the distinct character of individual split dal, so that they shine in the dish rather than primarily serving as a backdrop.

This lemon urad dal is a perfect example.

Creamy split urad asserts its presence, with tart undertones from the lemon juice and tomato, and dances with the tantalizing heat of the tarka spices. By adjusting the liquid component, you can make it as soupy or as thick as you like. When it's made somewhat drier, scoop over some hot basmati rice, or enjoy as a bowl of soup for a lovely starter or accompaniment to a larger meal. It's also a delightful lunch if you fancy a light midday meal.

The exquisite simplicity of this dish not only lies in the ease of preparation but also the whole experience of enjoying a bowl of creamy urad dal. Easy on the digestive system, it is highly nourishing and flavorful and quite satisfying too. Minimalism at it's finest.

Quick and Easy Lemon Urad DalQuick and Easy Lemon Urad Dal
Recipe by
Cuisine: Indian
Published on December 10, 2018

Fast and simple urad dal curry with smoky tempered spices and fresh lemon juice

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  • 1 cup dried split urad dal, without skins
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 medium tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • juice from 1 lemon (3 tablespoons)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon asafetida
  • 1 to 2 red or green chilies, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 dried red chili, crumbled
  • small handful of dried curry leaves, crumbled
  • Rinse the urad dal thoroughly. Add to a medium saucepan and cover with 2 1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally and adding a bit more water if necessary. Stir in the tomato and turmeric and simmer for another 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the salt and the lemon juice.

  • Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. When hot, toss in the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds if using, and stir for 60 seconds or until the mustard seeds turn grey and begin to splutter and pop. Add the asafetida, fresh and dried chilies, and dried curry leaves, stir once, and then pour the contents of the saucepan into the cooked dal. Stir quickly, cover the pan and let the pan sit with the heat off for 5 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. Stir well to combine and serve.

Makes 4 servings

Easy Ural Dal

Other easy dal dishes to enjoy from Lisa's Kitchen:
Red Lentil and Moong Dal
Toor Dal and Spinach Curry (Toor Dal Palak)
Toor Dal Pumpkin Soup
Urad Dal with Toor Dal and Spinach and Parsley

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sillygirl said...

And on baked potatoes!

Archana said...

SOunds like a broth I will love any day. I love anything taht has fenugreek in the tadka. Thanks Lisa for sharing.