Dhal is the perfect comfort food for any time of the day. It is flavoursome, nutritious and, as we love to describe it, a hug in a bowl. It can be eaten with rice, but we prefer to eat it with freshly made flatbread.
The main ingredient in a bowl of dhal is lentils or split peas, those are basically what the term, “dhal” means. Split peas and lentils both contain good amounts of protein, vitamin A, thiamin (vitamin B-1), riboflavin (vitamin B-2), niacin (vitamin B-4), pantothenic acid (vitamin-B-5), pyridoxamine (vitamin B-6), folate (vitamin B-9), cobalamin (vitamin B-12), choline, vitamin C, vitamin K, calcium, iron, magnesium, molybdenum, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium, dietary fibre and omega fatty acids. These are only a few of the nutrients our coconut dhal contains. Their descriptions and benefits can be found in our Nutrient Index.
We hope you enjoy our dhal recipe.
Ingredients (serves 2)
300g Yellow Split Peas, rinsed and soaked in hot water for a few hours
50g Masoor Dhal (Red Split Lentils), rinsed and soaked alongside yellow split peas
1 Large Onion, chopped
1 Large Garlic Clove, minced
1tsp Fresh Ginger, minced
1 Green/Red Chilli Pepper, chopped
10g Vegetable Stock Cube
400g tin Chopped Tomatoes
1 Bay Leaf
400ml can Full-Fat Coconut Milk (at least 65% coconut extract)
2g Sea Salt
60g Warm Water (amount of water varies with the microclimate of the kitchen)
Garlic powder (optional)
- Combine all the ingredients and knead until a non-sticky, but not too firm, dough is achieved.
- Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a covered bowl for at least 1.5hrs to rise.
- After the time has elapsed, knead the dough again for a few minutes.
- Stretch it out and divide into 5-6 equal parts.
- Shape each part into a ball and place them on a well-floured surface.
- Working on one at a time, flatten the ball by repeatedly making indentations on it. Using this motion, shape each ball into a circular/oval disk with a thickness of no more than 0.2cm.
- Heat up a dry pan until a drop of water placed on it vibrates and evaporates soon after being placed on it.
- Place one shaped piece of the dough gently onto the pan’s hot surface and cook until the side touching the pan is browned before flipping it over to cook the other side (the dough will release itself from the pan as it cooks. Bubbles/air pockets forming as the dough cooks are normal. Feel free to compress them or leave them as is.
- Take the flatbread out of the pan once fully cooked and set aside to slowly cool.
- Rinse and drain the soaked dhals using warm water.
- Transfer the dhal to a pot and cook on high heat for 20-25mins or until easy to smash between the thumb and index finger. Gently skim off the foam produced on the surface of the water as the dhal cooks.
- In a separate pot or saucepan, fry the onions, ginger and garlic in a little water until softened and fragrant.
- Add in the chopped chilli pepper, stock cube and spices and stir to fully coat the other ingredients with the spices and stock cube.
- Cook for another minute.
- Stir in the tin of chopped tomatoes, add in a bay leaf for extra flavour and cook down for an additional two minutes.
- Add in the cooked lentils and stir to fully combine with the masala sauce.
- Cook for 3-5mins.
- Stir in the coconut milk then place a lid on the pot/saucepan and cook down, stirring every 5mins to ensure that the dhal is not sticking to the bottom of the pan or burning.
- After 15-20mins, using the back of a spoon, mash some of the lentils in the pot/saucepan and stir. This should aid in thickening to dhal.
- Cook the dhal the rest of the way uncovered. When it’s done, it should be thick, without any runny parts and the lentils should be soft and, preferably, without an al dente bite to them.
- Dish into a bowl and garlic with a mixture of chia and sesame seeds or fresh coriander leaves.
If you try the recipe, upload a picture of it to Instagram with the hashtag #lickyourplaterecipe so we can have a look at and like it.