Who wants warming spicy lentil daal… ?

Daal! dal, dhal or maybe dahl! Whichever way you write it, it’s the same warming, spicy delicious bowl of goodness which can be used as a main, or a side, eaten with rice, with bread, or just on its own! As I have several really good friends who are Bengali (or married to Bengali’s) I have had more than my fair share of this lentil dish! ๐Ÿ˜€ I’ve eaten mountains of this at parties where it’s the only non-meat dish and, if we order a take-out, then this is always added as a side dish, but it really is easier than you think to make your own! ๐Ÿ™‚

Daal goes well with these other Indian dishes such as Chickpea, sweet potato and spinach curry, orย Saag Aloo, always withย chickpeas or with these crispy spicy morsels which are lentil pakora! ๐Ÿ˜€

Of course, as with most dishes, you can customise this to your liking – add a bit more chilli, tone down the coriander, up the garlic, make it more soup-like or indeed make it thicker so it can easily be scooped up rather than dipped in!

Make the daal as thick as you like…

Have a look at the recipe then let me know in the comments what you’d eat this with! ๐Ÿ™‚ I will be taking this over to Angie’s Fiesta Friday this weekend where I am co-hosting again ๐Ÿ™‚ If you’ve never been over to Fiesta Friday, it’s a weekly blog party where loads of us get together and share recipes, tips, and creative posts. You just follow the link to Fiesta Friday and have a look around. The party starts on a Friday (around 1pm UK time) and continues all weekend until Tuesday (past midnight UK time)! Plenty of time to visit all the blogs, leave some comments, make new friends! You are welcome to add your own posts too, so long as you follow the rules! Basically that means adding the link to the party, linking to the (usually) two co-hosts and visiting other bloggers posts! This week I’m co-hosting with Deb at the Pantry Portfolio – come on over and join the fun! ๐Ÿ˜€

5 from 3 votes
Spicy Daal

Homemade warming spicy lentil daal.

Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 2 servings
Created by:: Laurena @LifeDietHealth
  • 1 teaspoon oil we used coconut
  • 2 teaspoons panch puran A seed mixture of fenugreek, cumin, mustard, fennel & nigella
  • 1 medium onion thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic finely sliced
  • 1.5 cups washed red split lentils
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 large tomato chopped
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes (or 1/2 a fresh green chilli finely sliced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon salt we used pink Himalayan
  • 1 teaspoon dried coriander or a bunch of fresh coriander
  1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan, then add the panch puran (seeds) until they start to splutter.

  2. Add the onion, stir and cook until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute. (If using fresh chilli add this with the garlic but mind your eyes!)

  3. Tip the lentils in, mix to coat, cook for 30 seconds then carefully pour the water in, stir and leave to cook for 30 minutes stirring occasionally. Halfway through cooking, add the fresh chopped tomato (stir in). Add more water if necessary.

  4. Sprinkle in the turmeric, cumin, chilli and coriander powder. Allow to simmer for a further 10 minutes. Season with salt. Stir. Taste test and adjust seasonings as necessary.

  5. Before serving, sprinkle the daal with the dried (or fresh) coriander. 

  6. Enjoy!

Tips & Storage
  • Serve with rice or bread.
  • Have as a side with other Indian inspired dishes.
  • Make it spicy and add fresh green chilli.
  • Add more panch puran to really get those flavours.
  • Make your own panch puran mix if you can't find ready made - use equal amounts of each seed.
  • Store refrigerated for up to three days.



  • Eva 5th September 2018 at 13:12

    Lovely recipe (and starchy?), although I’ll have to improvise slightly on the punch puran lol. Still 30′ here! Hope all’s good with you?

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 5th September 2018 at 14:06

      Thanks Eva… How’s your starch plan going (I’m still waiting for the book)? I’m sure you’ve some seeds to improvise with?! It’s pouring with rain here today – it looks set to stay which is about right as it’s back to school week!

  • Eva 5th September 2018 at 14:24

    You’re making me envious with that rain lol. The starch thing is going ok thanks but I have made my own version which includes some fats, I’m such a rebel haha. I only have cumin seeds from that mixture but will add some ground coriander, I love that combination?

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 5th September 2018 at 15:08

      I’d rather have the sunshine?but at least I don’t have to water everything… they’re soaked! Only cumin seeds?not even nigella (onion) seeds? Well, it will still taste delicious I’m sure?????

  • Eva 5th September 2018 at 15:37

    I’m ashamed to say I’ve never really cooked with the other seeds?Mum would grind cumin seeds in a coffee grinder to make my dad’s favourite baked rice dish called Tava (although I understand this is also known as a soup or stew).
    Yes, I know I’m on my own with liking the rain and cooler weather lol

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 5th September 2018 at 20:33

      You’ve never made bread and sprinkled nigella seeds over? Or smelt the amazing flavours as a whole host of seeds sizzle in a pan? Oh my Eva… go find yourself an Asian supermarket and experiment with some seeds! Sending awesome flavours your way… ๐Ÿ˜› xxx

  • Eva 5th September 2018 at 21:34

    Lol, the only bread I’ve ever made has been The Vegan Corner’s No-Knead Foccacia. I keep meaning to make chapatis but it’s too ‘involved’ a recipe for me (I know it’s supposed to be quite simple!) – maybe I need a kick up the butt?Talking of bread, did you ever get round to making super thin flatbread?? Hmm, I may have a job on my hands finding an Asian supermarket… X

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 5th September 2018 at 21:58

      Ah but the satisfaction making your own bread… Oh and the gorgeous smell? Oh! I totally forgot about the super thin flatbread – I do still have the ultra thin, excessively long rolling pin though! I wonder if I can make bread (or at least supervise making of) whilst recuperating from my knee operation? (that’s come around too fast- Tuesday morning ?)!

  • Eva 6th September 2018 at 08:32

    Oh no, bread making will be the least of your worries. Will be thinking of you on Tuesday. I do love the smell of fresh bread, it’s just that I don’t have much patience and also get flustered very easily lol?

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 6th September 2018 at 09:11

      Lol… bread-making is easy! ๐Ÿ˜› You just need to have something to do in-between! ๐Ÿ˜› Thank you… I’m hoping I’ll still be posting on Wednesday as usual! x

  • Eva 6th September 2018 at 11:05

    It’s not the waiting around I mind, it’s the mess I get myself into whenever the sticky dough doesn’t come together lol, I can’t seem to get it right (apart from the lazy no-knead recipes haha). Hope you’ll be feeling ok on Wednesday xx

  • Cat | Curly's Cooking 9th September 2018 at 21:07

    I love daal but I have only had it in restaurants. I will have to give your lovely looking recipe a try, especially as you are saying it is easier than people may think!

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 9th September 2018 at 21:20

      Thanks Cat… You really should try it- you might even prefer your own to the restaurant versions!โ˜บ

  • Deb 9th September 2018 at 22:54

    This looks so great! I’ve only ever had it out as well and I think with fall approaching it is the perfect time to try and make it on my own. I bet it would also be perfect for having the next day at work for lunch as well! Happy Fiesta Friday!

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 10th September 2018 at 10:38

      Thanks Deb- you really should give it a go! โ˜บ I have been known to add it to a buddha bowl for lunch… if there’s ever any left!? Thanks for co-hosting with me??Happy Fiesta Friday.

  • Lily 10th September 2018 at 14:31

    I adore Indian cuisine. It’s such a labor of love with all the careful pairing of spices and the end result is such a heart-warming meal. Your lentil daal looks delicious!

  • Judith A. Graber 10th September 2018 at 18:43

    I love lentils and your dal looks especially good right now. I want to wish you the best tomorrow with your knee surgery. You must be so busy and then you’re a co-host too! Take care Laurena…

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 10th September 2018 at 19:05

      Thank you so much Judi ๐Ÿ™‚ Yes. very busy indeed trying to make sure the freezer is stocked and the house is clean and tidy! Co-hosting was a last minute request and I’d ‘almost’ forgotten about my knee! Maybe I should request this daal tomorrow for dinner if I’m up to eating! ๐Ÿ˜€ x

  • Angie | Fiesta Friday 14th September 2018 at 04:24

    Daal is so good I don’t know why I don’t make it often. It’s time to change that! Thanks for cohosting, Laurena. What a trooper you are, still helping with the fiesta even with the knee surgery. Kisses and hugs coming your way!

    • Laurena@LifeDietHealth 14th September 2018 at 09:39

      Thanks Angie, maybe put it on your list for when the weather cools down! ๐Ÿ˜› I’m happy to help out co-hosting – it gave me something else to think about rather than my knee! Slowly recovering so I’ll be Fiesta-ing with you all this weekend too! ๐Ÿ˜€ xxx


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