1Lentils are the meat replacement for proteins. In northern part of India there is favorite combo popularly known as dal-chawal. The simplicity of this dish adds to its flavor. This dal curry is not so popular in Kerala though. I have added bottle gourd / louki/ chorekkya to get added benefits.

This dish is perfect for your afternoon lunch. Sometimes all you need is simplicity. After a tiresome day all your heart desires is ‘maa ke haath ka dal chawal’ roughly translated to ‘mom’s lentil curry with rice’.

Dal is prepared in various different styles all over India. In Hyderabad dal has little sweetness. While punjabi dal has different taste.

There is a myth revolving around dal that it causes gastric problems. However I never found it to be true. Also if you add garlic to the dal it considerably reduces the chances of gastric problem if any. Other factors also helps like eating on time, exercising regularly and eating healthy.


Toor dal/ Sambhar dal – 1/2 cup

Lauki/ Bottle gourd/ chorekkya – 1/4 cup chopped

Onion – 1 medium

Tomato – 2 medium

Garlic – 2-3 cloves

Coriander Powder  – 1 tsp

Chilly Powder – 1 tsp

Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp

Asafoetida – 1/4 tsp

Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp

Curry Leaves – 1 stem

Chopped coriander leaves – 2 tblspn

Oil – 2 tblspn

Salt to taste


  1. Pressure cook dal and lauki with some water, turmeric and salt till nicely cooked. They should be mashed and not chunky.
  2. In a kadai, heat oil.
  3. Once hot splutter mustard seeds.
  4. Add chopped onion and saute till translucent.
  5. Add finely chopped garlic.
  6. Add curry leaves.
  7. Add chopped tomato and cook till soft and mushy. Mash it till bit.
  8. Add coriander and chilly powder and mix well.
  9. After 30 seconds add the contents from the pressure cooker into the kadai and mix well.
  10. Adjust the water based on the desired consistency you need.
  11. Add asafoetida powder.
  12. Remove from stove and garnish with coriander leaves.

Enjoy with rice. Till next time take care.3


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