Monday, December 2, 2013

Lauki Chane Ke Dal

"Lauki Chane ke Dal"
"Lauki" Or Bottlegourd is a humble vegetable with a lot of health benefits, usually ignored and not much relished due to its bland taste. As a kid I never liked lauki, but my mom never gave up and she ensured that we had this vegetable in different preprations, be it as "Lauki ka Kofta", "Lauki Chane ke Dal", "Stuffed Lauki", "Lauki Ka Sag" etc. Trust me, we all loved her spicy preprations of the humble "Lauki"
"Lauki Chane ke Dal" is one of our all time family favorite. Its a healthy and wholesome dish with the benefits of vegetables as well as lentils.

Ingredients

Chana Dal / Bengal gram dal - 1 cup
Lauki / Bottlegourd - 1 medium (400 grams)
Onion, chopped - 1 medium
Ginger, chopped - 1 tablespoon
Garlic, chopped - 1 tablespoon
Tomato, chopped - 1 medium
Green Chillies, roughly chopped - 2
Green coriander leaves, chopped - 2 tablespoon
Bay leaf - 1
Green Cardamom - 2-3 pods
Cloves - 4-5 pcs
Black Pepper corns- 8-10
Cinnamon Stick - 1 inch
Turmeric Powder - 3/4 th teaspoon
Red chilli powder - 1 teaspoon
Coriander powder - 1 tablespoon
Asafoetida - a pinch
Garam Masala Powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Cumin  Seeds - 1 teaspoon
Whole Red chillies - 2
Slat - to taste
Oil - 3 tablespoon

Method

Clean, wash and soak chana dal for 2-3 hours.
Peal and cut the lauki into cubes.

Heat 2 tablespoon of oil in a pressure cooker and add the bay leaves, green cardamom, cloves, black pepper corns and cinnamon stick, once the spices start  releasing the aroma add the chopped onions and fry for 2-4 minutes until golden brown.


Add the chopped lauki and mix well and fry for a minute or two, Add all the powdered spices, fry for 3-4 minutes, add the tomatoes, chopped ginger, green chillies and garlic, fry until the oil starts leaving the sides.






Add 3 and a half cups of water and bring it to a boil, add the soaked chana dal and salt. Let it come to a boil, close the lid of the pressure cooker and cook for 3-4 whistles.



Carefully open the lid once all the steam has escaped add the garam masala powder and fresh green coriander and mix well.


Heat one tablespoon of oil in a kadhai, add the cumin seeds, broken whole red chillies and asafoetida. Once the cumin seeds start to crackle turn off the heat and add the tempering to the dal.


Serve hot with a dollop of desi ghee (clarified butter) along with roti or rice.


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