Sweet, Sour and Spicy Dal


This dal recipe is a quick and easy dal recipe that has a blend of sweetness, tanginess and spiciness in equal proportions along with the added flavours of freshly grated coconut and fresh boiled peanuts. Posting a simple yet delectable recipe.




  • 1/2 cup toor dal / split pigeon peas rinsed well and soaked in water for an hour
  • 1/2″ piece of ginger 1 green chily and 1″ cinnamon crushed in a mortar and pestle coarsely
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 to 3 tsp kashmiri chilli powder(adjust to spice required)
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 to 3 kokum petals
  • 2 tbsp jaggery(adjust sweetness to individual taste)
  • A fistful of fresh groundnuts soaked in water and then boiled till cooked
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp freshly grated coconut
  • Finely chopped coriander leaves to garnish


  • 2 tsp oil or ghee
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 cloves
  • 1/8 tsp asafoetida
  • 8 to 10 curry leaves
  • 2 bor chillies or 1 dry red chilly


  • Pressure cook the soaked toor dal along with a pinch of turmeric and 1/2 tsp oil, until pressure is released 3 to 4 times. When the pressure settles down, cool the dal, mash it well.
  • Heat oil in a deep pan and add mustard seeds. When they splutter add cumin seeds,asafoetida,curry leaves, dry red chillies, cloves and saute well. Add the crushed ginger green chilly cinnamon paste, saute well, add turmeric powder,add the mashed dal, water to get an even consistency.
  • Add red chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, boiled peanuts,jaggery,kokum and salt, stir well and let it simmer till the flavours sink into the dal.
  • Garnish with freshly grated coconut and chopped coriander leaves.
  • Serve piping hot with steamed rice.


  • This dal should be sweet, sour and spicy in equal proprtions, so adjust flavours accordingly.
  • Adding a pinch of turmeric while cooking the dal, brightens the colour of the dal and adding 1/2 tsp oil prevents the dal from foaming/minimizes foaming.
  • Remove the kokum petals after a while as the tanginess will increase if kept for long.
  • Adding fresh groundnuts and fresh coconut is very much optional but it does taste good when added.

Join the Conversation

  1. Very nice to see you adding kokum!

    1. Maharashtrian cooking we use more of kokum, Megala 🙂 thanx

      1. I have few doubts about using kokum: is it edible? If not so when to remove them from curry?

        1. In dals you really don’t need to remove it as only 1 or 2 are added. Remove only if excess dal remains for next meal. But when you prepare solkadi remove it after an hour and a half or so else it’ll become very tangy as around 10 kokum petals are used.

          1. Thanks for the information.

          2. Nytym Megala 🙂

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  3. Seems delicious.. 🙂

    1. Thank you 🙂

  4. The recipe you have made looks so yummy!! Thanks for sharing this with us.

    1. Welcome 🙂

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