Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Sultani Dal

Avadhi Cuisine comes from the city of Nawabs (Lucknow). This cuisine is famous for its distinctly aromatic and flavourful dishes. Sultani Dal is also a very popular dal from Awadhi Cuisine. Use of Cream and aromatic spices make this dish truly Nawabi.

The original dal has Yogurt and other spices that are rarely known. Hence Garam Masala has been added to this version of Sultani Dal. 

Yield: Approx 2-3 people (along with main course)

Approx. Time: 30 min

For Dal:
1 cup Tuvar Daal (Pigeon Pea)
1/4 tspn Turmeric powder
1/2 tspn Red Chilly powder
Salt to taste

For Sultani Dal:
1 tbspn Ghee
1 tspn Cumin seeds 
Cooked Dal
Water, as required
Salt to taste
1/2 tspn Cardamom powder 
1/4 tspn Turmeric powder 
1/2 tspn Ginger paste
1/2 tspn Garlic paste
1/2 tspn Chilly paste
15-20 Saffron strings 
2 tbspns Milk (For soaking Saffron)
1/2 tspn Garam Masala 
1/2 cup Fresh Cream 
1/2 tspn Roasted Clove powder (Laung powder) 

For Garnishing:
Fresh Corriander
Mint leaves

Other Ingredients (For Dhungar / Smoky  effect):
2 Betel leaves (Paan leaves)
1 Hot Live Charcoal 
1/2 tspn Roasted Clove powder (Laung powder) 
1 tspn Ghee 

1. Dry roast the cloves for 2 minutes and coarsely grind it into powder.
2. Soak Saffron strings in two tablespoons of milk

Wash Tuvar Dal. Add 2 cups of water, turmeric powder, red chilly powder and salt to it. Pressure cook it till three whistles.

Heat Ghee in a pan. Add some cumin seeds to it. Now pour the cooked dal into the pan and saute for 2 minutes. Then turn off the flame. Now place betel leaves in the centre on dal. Place burning charcoal on the betel leaves. Put clove powder and pour ghee over the burning charcoal and immediately close the lid. Keep the lid on for approximately ten minutes, so that the smoked flavour is absorbed by Dal. After ten minutes, remove the charcoal and betel leaves from Dal. 

Now again place the pan on medium flame. Add water to adjust the consistency. Then add Salt, Cardamom powder, Turmeric powder, Ginger paste, Garlic paste and Green chilly paste. Give it a stir. Then add Saffron, Garam Masala, Fresh Cream and clove powder. Mix well and simmer over a low heat for some time. Garnish it with Corriander leaves and mint. Serve hot with Jeera Rice or Roti.

You may also give garlic tadka at the end. 
If betel leaves are not available, then you may use a slice of onion for Dhungar (Smoky effect).

Stepwise Pictures:


  1. Your picture tell's the whole story!!!

  2. Dal looks amazing. Wonderfully prepared.

  3. That's a new style of preparation to me... Perfect recipe with perfect clicks...

  4. Dal looks yummy .......New way of making dal by giving smokey flavour in it :)
    Love the clicks too !!!

  5. I dont mind inviting myself to ur place to enjoy dal.How delicious this dal na.

  6. I agree with Priya. If you cook like this your guests will never leave your hospitality.
    Love Ash.

  7. Very fascinating... Thanks for sharing :-)

  8. Hello Amarendra,
    Let me begin by saying that your blog and recipes are AMAZING, STUNNING, INFORMATIVE and absolutely DROOL-WORTHY. I had heard about the use of charcoal to get the smoked flavor, but your step by step photos make it so much easier to understand. I live in the U.S. so I don't know how easy it will be to cook like that but I am definitely going to try. I really did learn a lot from your blog, and here I thought I knew everything there was to know about cooking. Thank you for teaching us so much more. Looking forward to more recipes from you. I am going to be a regular visitor to your wonderful blog.
    Thank you.


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