Tadka Dal or Tempered Bengal gram or Chana dal

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This Tadka Dal or Tempered Bengal gram or Chana dal is a simple and spicy  Punjabi dish and is one of my favorite dals; fast to cook and tasty to eat with roti or flatbread or rice.

We North Indians cook most of the Dals,’ unlike South Indians who mainly cook tuvar dal. Channa dal is one of the dals frequently cooked by my mom as it was a family favorite.

Chana Dal is available on most roadside Dhabas'(roadside eateries) and is thus also called ‘Dhabe wali dal.’ Both dal fry and Dal tadka are two popular dal dishes on the menu of most Indian restaurants The tempering with ghee and dried red chillies enhance the taste of the otherwise bland dal. When the tadka or tempering is drizzled above the hot dal the aroma and flavor in the air is mouthwatering.

Chana dal is nutritious, delectable, and easily digested. Apart from being used in soups, salads, curries, dal preparations, savories with gram flour even rice pulao; it is also used to make sweets like besan laddoo.

The Dal is not runny and should have a thick consistency. In India, we cook most of our dals and beans in a pressure cooker. This dal too I have used a pressure cooker as it cooks well and also saves time and fuel.

My mom taught me well and at a very young age at that.It was one of my husband’s favourite dal’s and he always ended up having an extra helping whenever I cooked it.My sister-in-law and I used to take the boiled dal, chillies, squeeze half a lime in it and eat it just like a snack. It is tangy and yummy to taste.

Easy Cooking Ideas for Singles#65- Tadka Dal or Tempered Bengal gram or Chana dal- Recipe

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1 small cup chana dal

1 chopped onion

½  tsp coriander powder

½ tsp chilly powder

½ tsp turmeric powder/Haldi

½ tsp cumin seeds/jeera

salt as per taste

1 tbsp ghee or oil

4 cups water for cooking the dal


Clean and wash the dal

Boil the dal with the salt, turmeric powder, and water.

Cook in the pressure cooker for at least 6 to 7 whistles.

Open the cooker and check if the dal is done. If it is watery then let it boil on an open flame till the water evaporates. Mix the dal nicely with a ladle.

Transfer the dal to a serving bowl.

Next, take a small pan for the tempering. Add the ghee and once it is hot add the cumin seeds. Once they crackle add the chillies.

Then add the finely chopped onions and sauté till they are nice and red.

Add the red chilli powder and coriander powder and switch off the flame.

Serve this yellow Dhaba style dal with steamed rice, jeera rice or Rotis, onion wedges and papad.I just pour it over steamed rice and dig right in.If you want to increase the flavour then lavishly pour a tablespoon of raw ghee over the dal and then feel the taste!

This Tadka Dal or Tempered Bengal gram or Chana dal was very easy, wasn’t it?

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. verushka143 says:

    yummmm! such comfort food.


  2. Yes Verushka, totally comfort food. My daughter is home so all her favorites 🙂


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