Chana Dhal

Ready in 20 minutes

Serves 8 people


  • 96g chana dal – split chickpeas or use yellow split peas – pre soaked overnight
  • 500 ml water
  • 1 large tomato
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 inch ginger
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1/3 to 1/2 tsp salt
  • 150g white basmati

To temper:

  • 1/2 tsp oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  •  4g chopped cilantro (for garnish)


  • Soak the dal overnight. Drain and combine with 500ml water in a saucepan. Cover and cook for 20 to 25 minutes over medium heat. Open the lid a crack if the water threatens to boil over.
  • Meanwhile, blend the tomato, garlic, ginger, coriander, turmeric, paprika and cayenne with 175ml of water until smooth.
  • Add the tomato mixture and salt to the cooking split peas. Cover and cook for another 15 minutes or until the split peas are tender. Mash some of the split peas and continue to simmer until desired tenderness and consistency.
  • Make the tempering: Heat oil in a small skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and cook until they change colour. half to 1 minute.. Add half of this tempering, garam masala, cayenne to the simmering dal and mix in. Taste and adjust salt and spice. Take off heat, add cilantro and mix in. garnish with the remaining tempering and serve.

Serving suggestions: with rice, potatoes, naan bread