Gujarati Toor Dal(Dal Soup) Recipe

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This recipe is eaten by Gujaratis almost every day with their meal. It is first eaten with Chapati by dipping Chapati in Dal and then with Rice by mixing rice and dal. Very good source of protein for those who are vegetarians.A typical vegetarian meal consists of Dal, one or two cooked vegetables, some chopped raw vegetables, Chapati (flat bread) or naan or Pooree (fried bread- recipe will be posted soon for Pooree), plain cooked rice and plain yogurt or raita (salted yogurt with finely chopped cucumber, carrots, or onion)

Prep time:
Cook time:
Servings: 6


Cost per serving $0.01 view details
  • One and a half cup Toor Dal (Split Pidgeon Peas)
  • 8 Cups water;
  • Mustard Seeds (black)
  • Methi Seeds (Fenugreek Seeds)
  • Hing (Asafoetida Powder)
  • Oil (Olive oil preferred)
  • Amboliya (dried mango cut pieces) or Amchur powder or Kokum pieces.
  • Gur (jaggery which are brown sugar pieces made from Sugar Cane)
  • Salt, Turmeric, Paprika, Red Chilli Powder, Dhana Jiru (mixed powder from coriander and cumin seeds)
  • Fresh chopped ginger, fresh green chillies (optional), Cilantro leaves & dried red chillies.


  1. Step 1.(Cooking) Wash Toor Dal until water is clear. Drain and add 6 cups of water in a 3 quart or larger saucepan. Let the Dal soak for 30 minutes in this water before cooking. On high heat, bring (do not cover the pan) the contents to boil. Stir and lower heat at boilingpoint as foam will rise. Boil for 30 to 40 minutes until Dal is soft and melting, stirring occasionally. Remove pan from heat and use a hand blender or whisk to break up lentils. Add two more cups of water and put the pan back on low heat.
  2. Step 2.(Seasoning). In a small wok or pan, heat 2 tbl oil with 1 tsp each black mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds,and one whole chilli, pinch of asafoetida. Add chopped green chillies (if used) after the seeds start sputtering. Fry green chillies for 30 seconds longer and add all the contents carefully to simmering dal. This process is called "vaghar". (Caution: hot oil when added to simmering dal will sizzle and splatter)
  3. Step 3. (Spices). While Dal continues to boil, add the following:1.5 to 2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp each of paprika, turmeric, 1 tsp of Dhana Jiru powder, 2 to 3 pieces amboliya, 1tsp fresh chopped ginger, pinch of red chilli powder. Stir frequently and continue boiling for 10 minutes. Add 1/4 cup gur (jaggery) and boil 10 more minutes.Dal should be smooth and should have consistency of tomatoe soup.Add water if needed; adjust salt and other spices to taste. Discard amboliya pieces from Dal.Wash and Chop Cilantro for garnish after turning off the heat.


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Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving %DV
Serving Size 326g
Recipe makes 6 servings
Calories 9  
Calories from Fat 5 56%
Total Fat 0.59g 1%
Saturated Fat 0.36g 1%
Trans Fat 0.0g  
Cholesterol 2mg 1%
Sodium 15mg 1%
Potassium 27mg 1%
Total Carbs 0.79g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0.1g 0%
Sugars 0.29g 0%
Protein 0.26g 0%
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  • Chris
    November 20, 2013
    I cook a lot of Indian food from freshly ground whole spices and have pretty developed taste sense for this sort of thing. I'd like to say that this recipe was excellent. I added a touch less sugar (jaggery) than indicated, maybe started with 1.5T. I also added some curry leaves to the tempering, or vaghar step. I used the amchur, or mango powder, rather than fresh mango since that's what I had on hand. It took a lot longer to cook the dal in the first step than I expected, over an hour. Had it with some chicken dhansak from the freezer. I also added a good handful of chopped cilantro directly to the soup after turning the heat off, and a touch more later for garnish. I added 3 chopped small Indian chilis and almost blew my hair off, but the jaggery toned it down nicely. I really wouldn't want it to get toooo sweet though. Great job, thanks.

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