Maa Chane Di Dal a famous Dal or Lentil from the state of Punjab in India. Maa means “Mother” and Chole stands for Split ChickPea Lentil used in Dal along with Split Black Gram Lentils. Dal cooked by Moms for their beloveds!! Maa Chole Di Daal is different from Maa Ki Dal that made with Whole Black Gram Lentils(Kali Dal or Saboot Urad) which is the most popular lentil dish from Punjab also known as the famous Dal Makhani!!. Since Dal Makhani is made with loads of butter and cream at times it is heavy on the stomach for few and one can’t consume it on daily basis. Maa Chane Di Dal is light on the stomach as it is made in less ghee also the lentils used in the Dal are light on the stomach.
Maa Choley Di Daal is also known as Langar Wali Dal or Maa Choley Di Dal and is served in the langars in Gurudwaras( Langars-community kitchen and Gurudwara-Holy place of worship for Sikhs). Years back when I was in Chandigarh we used to go to Gurudwara especially on Guru Purab Day (an auspicious day for the followers of Sikhism) have this special meal of Langar Wali Dal, Aloo Gobhi(Cauliflower and Potatoes Indian styled veg.) and Tandoori Chappatis. Though the Dal is made in every home of Punjab and I also make it quite often but no one can never compare the taste from that made in langars. I think it is the faith and selfless service and love of the devotees who prepare the food, goes into it. Pipping hot Dal, with subzi and hot Tandoori Roti made fresh on the spot on the clay tandoors gives it a whole mystical taste. And not to forget the Kada Prasad or Guru Prasad (the sweet Whole Wheat flour pudding in Desi Ghee made for offering) offered daily to the devotees who visit Gurdwara. Will soon update the recipes for Aloo Gobhi Ki Sabzi(Cauliflower and Potato Dry Veg.) and Kada Prasad.
Coming back to Maa Chane Di Dal is made with two Daals/Lentils, split black gram lentil(Chilka Urad) and split chickpea lentil(Chana Dal). I also add some Red Lentils to it. My neighbor (while we were in Chandigarh) used to add this to the lentils, she told me this adds more creaminess to the dal. While in Punjab you can buy the packs of mixed Dal that many stores. This Dal is best enjoyed with hot chappatis or phulkas and steamed rice. There is no need to soak the dal for hours like Whole Urad for Dal Makhani. Soak all the three lentils just 10-15 minutes before you make it. The rich flavor and aroma of the dal comes from the use of ginger and garlic in it. Adding some extra ginger while the dal is cooking adds on to the taste of the dish. The onion tomato masala for the dal is made in desi ghee. You can use any oil of your choice, but desi ghee makes it more flavourful. In my earlier posts also I have always insisted on the use of desi ghee(in moderation as it’s own set of health benefits especially for the growing up kids). I think I should soon do a post on the benefits of Desi Ghee and how to make it at home in an easy and convenient way. Tempering the Dal with cumin and red chilli powder in desi ghee just before serving takes the taste of the dish to another level!! yummm again feeling hungry😋🙂.
So come let’s see how I make this simple Dal, so full of flavors and rich in taste!!
Maa Chane Di Dal
- 3/4 Cup Chana Dal/Split Chickpea Lentil
- 1/2 Cup Chilka Urad/Split Black Gram Lentil
- 5-6 no. Dhuli Masoor/Red Lentils
- 2 Tsp Finely chopped Ginger
- 1-2 no. Green Chilis as per spice level/optional
- 5-6 no. Garlic Cloves
- 1/2 +1/2 Tsp Red Chilli Powder as per spice level/optional
- 1 Tsp Garam Masala use any other flavorless oil
- 1/2 Tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1 +1/4 Tsp Cumin Seeds 1/2 for Tadka or tempering
- 1 no. Bay leaf optional
- 1 no. Cinnamon Stick small piece
- 1/4 Tsp Asafoetida/Hing optional
- 1-2 Tbsp Desi Ghee
- Wash and soak the lentils for at least 15 minutes
- In a pressure cooker, add lentils and water. Water should be around 2 inches above the level of lentils. Switch on the flame and keep it to medium.
- When water the lentils starts to boil, collect the forth that gathers at the top and discard it.
- Add bay leaf, cinnamon stick, turmeric and salt. Add 1Tsp of finely chopped ginger. Close the lid of the pressure cooker and cook lentils till 2 whistles.
- Meanwhile, finely chop onions, tomatoes, garlic and green chilies(if using).
- In a pan, heat ghee/oil, add, asafoetida, cumin seeds, when the seeds start to crackle add chopped garlic and rest of the ginger. Saute till the garlic starts to turn brown.
- Add finely chopped onions, and saute till it turns pink.
- Add chopped tomatoes and cook till tomatoes turn soft and mushy.
- Add garam masala, red chilli powder, mix and cook masala for 2-3 minutes. Once done, keep aside to add to the cooked lentils/dal.
- When the pressure in the cooker subsides, check whether lentils are cooked, add some water to adjust the consistency of lentils. Add the onion-tomato masala and mix well in lentils.
- Switch on the flame and cook lentils for 2-3 minutes. You can add more water around 1/2 cup or as per your required consistency of lentils.
- Before serving, you can temper dal. For that in a pan, add ghee/oil, add 1/4 Tsp of cumin seeds, 1 whole red chili, 1/4 Tsp of Red Chilli Powder and add this to the dal. This optional step, if don't want tadka, skip this.
- For Gluten-free Lentils, skip adding Asafoetida
- For no-onion no-garlic recipe, skip onions and garlic. This Dal tastes equally good without onion and garlic.
- Add tempering just before serving dal.
Serve this Dal hot with some hot phulkas or tandoori rotis and steamed or jeera rice with some onions on the side. This goes well with Naan breads also. For homemade Naan bread recipe click here. Some spicy Aloo Gobhi along with a glass Chass/Indian Buttermilk will give you the Dhaba(roadside restaurants in India) experience or the humble langar experience.
Hope you will like my version of this rustic Maa Chane/Choley Di Dal or Langar Wali Dal.
I am taking my hot pipping Maa Choley Di Daal to #122 My Legume Love Affair, hosted by Renu of Cook with Renu. The event was started by Susan of The Well Seasoned Cook and Lisa of Lisa’s Kitchen who have been hosting a series this series for a while. I met Renu on one of the facebook groups, check her blog here. A well-organized blog with detailed recipes of Indian and International Cuisine. So when she announced the event on her page, I gladly grabbed the opportunity to participate in it. Renu is hosting this event for the first time and this also my first time in the event. I wish Renu all the best👍 and hope to see a lot of interesting posts at the event.
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Thanks for stopping by. Keep coming back for more such yummy recipes 😋!!