Vaatli dal, which literally means “ground dal” is a simple Maharashtrian preparation, eaten as a side dish with lunch or dinner. This can be eaten as a snack too. Coarsely ground chana dal is cooked in a tempering of mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida. Vaatli dal is often served on Anant Chaturdashi, the last day of the Ganpati festival. Here’s the recipe:
1 cup split chickpeas (chana dal)
3 Green chillies (hari mirch)
1 tsp chopped ginger (adrak)
1 tsp Mustard seeds (rai / sarso)
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
10 to 12 Curry leaves (kadi patta)
½ tsp Asafoetida (hing)
1 tsp Turmeric powder (haldi)
1 tbsp oil (tel)
Salt as per taste (namak)
2 tbsp Fresh grated coconut (nariyal)
2 tbsp Fresh Chopped coriander leaves(hara dhaniya)
1 tbsp Lemon juice (nimbu ka ras)
- Soak chana dal in water for 4 to 5 hours.
- Drain the water and grind it alongwith chillies and ginger to a coarse paste, without adding any water.
- Keep the ground dal aside.
- Heat oil in a pan.
- Add mustard seeds and cumin seeds.
- When the seeds start crackling, add hing, and curry leaves.
- Now, add the ground dal, turmeric powder and salt.
- Saute on low flame for few minutes.
- Cook covered for 10 minutes on a slow flame.
- Keep stirring at regular intervals, mashing the dal with the spatula, ensuring there are no lumps left.
- Once the dal is cooked, turn off the flame.
- Squeeze lemon juice and garnish with chopped coriander and scraped coconut.
- Serve hot.
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