Whole Masoor Dal/ Red Lentil Curry

Pulses and lentils being rich sources of protein are ideal to have in everyday diet. They supply the major requirement of protein, vitamins & minerals! Today’s post focuses on one such lentil that is red lentil or whole masoor. This gravy makes a great combination to chapathi/ roti/ poori or even goes well with rice.

Look for my other recipes with lentils and pulses. Kaalu Sambar / Curry made of Pulses and Black Chickpeas Rasam (stew)/ Black Chana saaru.

Here is the recipe for Whole Masoor Dal.
Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Serves - 3-4
Whole Masoor dal – 1 cup
Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
Ginger – ½ inch piece, crushed
Garlic pods – 4-6, crushed
Tomatoes – 2 (medium)
Onions – 1 (medium)
Oil/ Ghee/ Butter – 2 tbsp
Green Chilli – 1
Red Chilli Powder – ½ tsp
Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
Garam Masala powder - ½ tsp
Coriander leaves – few strands
Salt – to taste
Cream – for garnishing (optional)
  • Soak masoor dal for at least 1 hour. It is fine to use the dal soaked overnight too.
  • Pressure cook soaked dal with 3 cups of water. It will be cooked in 3 whistles. Set aside until pressure settle down.
  • Chop cleaned onions & tomatoes and keep separate. Slit/ chop green chilli, keep aside.
  • Peel & crush ginger and garlic well.
  • Heat 2 tbsp oil or butter in a pan/ wok. Add cumin seeds and allow crackling.
  • Add chopped onions & fry until brown (you will get nice aroma). Do this in medium flame & avoid burning.
  • Add crushed ginger & garlic. Fry until raw smell goes away.
  • Add chopped tomatoes and green chilli. Fry them sautéing in between until tomatoes are cooked & becomes tender.
  • Add chilli powder & turmeric powder.
  • Add the cooked masoor dal and add water to adjust the consistency as needed. Press & mash some dal with the spoon to get the thicker gravy.
  • Add garam masala, salt to taste and simmer for 4-5 minutes.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Switch of the stove.
  • Serve hot with rotis or rice, adding cream on top!