This cholar dal recipe is the ‘queen’ of Bengali vegetarian recipes, which can be found to be part of every menu. Now, if you have a close look at any Bengali vegetarian cookbook, you would quickly notice that every recipe is made without using onion or garlic. Especially the fasting recipes, which are completely devoid of onion, garlic and sometimes even red lentils or musur daal. Often on such occasions, this cholar dal recipe comes to the rescue.
Another best thing about this Bengali chana dal recipe is that it can be paired with a variety of Indian breads and rice dishes. Best served with luchis or Bengali pooris, it goes very well with kochuris, porotas and even roti or chapatti. If you are in mood for some rice, then you can definitely go for Bengali Basanti Pulao or even something simple like Peas Pulao.
Ruling The Hearts: From Para’r Dokaan to Hensel
This daal recipe makes multiple appearances on a Bengali foodie’s plate. On a road-side stall, it is cooked with small pieces of potatoes and coconut, and is often served with Hinger Kochuri. Often made as a traditional Bengali breakfast dish, it comes with a helping of Aloo’r Dum and phulko (fluffy) luchi. If you talk about Bengali niramish ranna (Bengali Vegetarian Recipes), this recipe steals every heart with every bit of it.
Though it is popular as a part of breakfast menu, I often make this for my weekday dinner meals. What I extremely like about this recipe is that it offers me a tasty dinner idea which can be coupled with roti/chapatti, parantha or luchi, and wraps up the cooking within 30-45 minutes. If you have options available, then buy organic chana dal as it is much tastier and makes delicious cholar daal.
Cooking with a pressure cooker makes life much simpler. All you need to do is cook it till it whistles few times and then temper it with handful of spices to sort your dinner in a quickest way. On my right, you can see how I paired it with luchis and aloo’r dum for a complete meal.
- 1/3 cup Chana Dal or Cholar Dal or Bengal Gram
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 2 tbsp Ghee
- 1 inch Cinnamon
- 4 Green Cardamoms
- 5-6 Cloves
- 1 tbsp Ginger Grated
- 1/2 tsp Garam Masala Powder
- Salt To Taste
- 2 Green Chilies Slit in halves
- A pinch of Hing or Asafoetida
Pressure cook the Chana dal or Bengal Gram with ample water, salt and a few drops of oil. It should take 10-15 minutes to whistle around 7-8 times on high heat, to cook properly. Once done, turn off the heat and allow it to cool on its own.
Now, take a pan and heat the ghee. Temper it with the hing, whole spices and bay leaves.
Add the chilies.
Now, pour the boiled dal in it. Add water if needed.
Now, season it with some salt and add a tsp of sugar. Add the garam masala powder and allow it to simmer for 4-5 minutes.
Before serving you may add some freshly chopped coriander leaves. But that is completely optional.