2 ratings

Red Lentil Dhal

Flavored with a spicy tomato masala
Courtesy of Hari Ghotra

You can make dhal any consistency you like — thick and chunky or thin and soupy — and with any kind of lentil. Regardless of your preference, it's super easy to make, naturally vegan and full of spices. 

Recipe courtesy of Hari Ghotra

Ready in
30 m
10 m
(prepare time)
20 m
(cook time)
Calories Per Serving


For the Lentils

  • 200 Grams red lentils, washed
  • 900 Milliliters water (approximately)
  • 1 Teaspoon salt

For the Masala

  • 1 Tablespoon ghee or rapeseed oil
  • 1 Teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 dried red chili
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 Teaspoon ginger, grated
  • 1 Teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 chili, finely chopped
  • 1 Teaspoon fenugreek leaves
  • 1 Teaspoon garam masala

For the Garnish

  • Handful of coriander (cilantro), chopped


For the Lentils

Place lentils in a pan with the salt, cover with the water, and bring to a boil.

Remove the froth, reduce the heat and leave to simmer for 10 minutes. Check that the lentils are cooked by squeezing them between your fingers. Once soft, remove from heat.

For the Masala

In a frying pan heat the oil or ghee. Add the dried chili, bay leaf and the cumin seeds.

When the seeds sizzle, add the onion and garlic and fry until lightly browned. Reduce the heat and add the tomatoes, ginger, turmeric, fenugreek and the chopped chili. Gently let the ingredients cook down for about 10 minutes to make a thick masala paste.

Add a ladle full of the lentils (dhal) to the masala paste in the frying pan and stir together, then empty all the contents back into the pan with the lentils and stir. It should have the consistency of a thick soup, but if it's too thick just add a little boiling water and remove from the heat. If you prefer it thicker just leave it on the heat to reduce until you get the consistency you want.

Check the seasoning and add a little salt if required. Stir in the garam masala.

For the Garnish

Stir in the chopped coriander (cilantro) and serve.