Chana Dal (Spicy Split Yellow Lentils)

[Quick Facts]
Main Ingredients: Split Yellow Lentils, Ground Turmeric, Ginger, Garlic
Time Required: 2.5 hours
Serves: 3


  • 1.5 cups of washed and drained Split Yellow Lentils
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Garam Masala
  • 3 tablespoons of Clarified Butter (Ghee) or Cooking Oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Turmeric (Pisi Haldi)
  • 3/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cumin Seeds (Saabut Sufaid Zeera)
  • 2 cloves of peeled and chopped Garlic (Lehsan)
  • 2 slices of fresh unpeeled Ginger (Adrak)
  • 1/4 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder (Pisi Lal Mirch)
  • 5 cups of Water
  • Instructions:

    (1) Combine lentils in a heavy pot with 5 cups of water.

    (2) Bring to a boil and remove any surface scum.

    (3) Add the turmeric powder and ginger.

    (4) Cover the pot with lid leaving the lid slightly open, turn heat to low.

    (5) Simmer gently for 1.5 hours or until the lentils are tender.

    (6) Stir every 5 minutes or so during the last half hour of cooking to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of pan.

    (7) Remove ginger slices.

    (8) Add salt and garam masala and stir to mix.

    (9) Heat the oil or clarified butter in a small frying pan over medium heat. When it is hot, add the cumin seeds and garlic.

    (10) Stir and fry until the garlic pieces are lightly brown.

    (11) Add the red chilli powder into the pan. Immediately lift the pan off the heat and pour the entire content (oil and spices) into the pot with the lentils. Stir to mix.

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