Recipes

Easy Indian Dal

I threw this Indian Dal together one night when I had a lot of veggies to use up and a giant bag of dal. It’s easy to make and easy to tweak!

I bought the bag of chana dal (those little yellow, lentil looking things) at a local Indian grocery store. Chana dal is just a type of bean that is split in half…it’s from the same family as a chickpea/garbanzo beans. If you can’t find chana dal, lentils would work just as well in this dish.

indian dal recipe

Easy Indian Dal

Ingredients

  • 1 t olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 gloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium chili (I used a serrano), seeds/ribs removed and finely diced
  • 1 small eggplant
  • 8 okra pieces
  • 1 small rutabaga (or sweet potato)
  • 1/2 c. chana dal (dry)
  • 2 c. vegetable broth
  • 1/2 t curry powder
  • 1 t garam masala
  • 1 t cumin
  • salt to taste

How to make it

  1. Chop the eggplant, okra and rutabaga into bite-sized pieces.
  2. Rinse the dal and pick out any funky looking pieces.
  3. In a deep saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat.
  4. Add the onion, garlic, and chili to the pan and saute until the onion is translucent.
  5. Add the curry, garam masala and cumin and continue to saute for 2-4 more minutes, until very fragrant.
  6. Pour in the vegetable broth and add the okra, eggplant, rutabaga, and chana dal. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.
  7. Simmer over low until the dal is tender, around 45-60 minutes and the broth has thickened and reduced.
  8. Add salt to taste and serve over brown rice.

Recipe Notes:

  • You could throw in any root vegetables/squash that you have on hand.
  • If I used the same veggies again, I would put the eggplant in towards the end of cooking so it didn’t get so mushy.
  • The okra was good the first day, but it made the leftovers have this weird texture…like goopy and slimy.
  • This is a very warm and sweetly spiced dish. If you want a little more heat, use a hotter chili or add cayenne pepper.
  • I cooked my brown rice with a little coconut oil (about 1 t). I don’t remember which blogger gave me that idea – sorry! Raise your hand if it was you! The flavor was subtle, but excellent with this dish.

What’s your favorite Indian dish? I love chicken tikka masala and palak paneer. And chana masala. Ok, I kind of like them all.

See more easy, healthy recipes here!

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  • Jessica @ How Sweet
    at

    Bahahaha I love that you call it the “slut” sit. My dog (well, at my parents house) ALWAYS does this and I call her the slut dog. Every time my dog is outside and a man walks by, she runs over and just LAYS like that. Only with men.

    • Teri
      at

      LOL! I LOVE that you call that dog a slut too! We refer to Maizey as “slut pup” more than we call her Maizey. 🙂 That is HILARIOUS your dog only does that with men. hahahahhahaha

  • Heather @ Side of Sneakers
    at

    I LOVE chana masala- but I’ve only made it myself so I guess that’s not really fair. I liked it enough to want to try more though!

  • Jessica
    at

    Awww…I love your dog! I have a boxer too and they are such hams! My boxer looks very similar to yours except he has white on his face, chest and feet (aka his socks). I’ll have to show my husband your picture and then he’ll be determined to try and train ours to watch football with him too. lol.

    • Teri
      at

      We wanted a brindle with markings like yours (particularly white on her face) but we love her little black ninja face now. I’d love to see pictures of your boxer boy! Do you have a blog?

      • Jessica
        at

        I’d love to show you some pics but I don’t have a blog yet. 🙁 I could email ’em to you? Yeah I love her black ninja face too! I think my boxer boy would be in love. <3

  • Heather (Heather's Dish)
    at

    BAHAHAHA oh my gosh your dog is crazy! i am laughing out loud and MY dogs are staring at me like i’m the crazy person 🙂

    • Teri
      at

      hahahahaha. Yay! Love that I got you to laugh out loud. 🙂

  • Kris | iheartwellness.com
    at

    Hahaha! Awww how cute is y our pooch!!

    Hudson, (my wiener dog) sits like a slooze all the time 😉 He loves being on his back for some reason! This is too cute!

    xxoo

  • Talia @ Texas Gunslinger
    at

    ohhhhh myyyyyyyyyy goshhhhhh, that is flippin hilarious!!!! 🙂

  • BroccoliHut
    at

    Haha, my pug Gus is the same way–sits upright like a human, with his legs flailing apart.

  • Rebecca
    at

    HAHAAH. oh my gosh! that dog is the funniest thing i’ve seen in a while. i love how dogs can have such awkward and funny positions 🙂 i know my dogs have those times day to day.. oh and by the way that indian dal looks deliicious!

  • Michelle (The Runner's Plate)
    at

    You should check out my blog for how I make homemade naan. It isn’t hard and it tastes pretty darn good!

  • Ashley
    at

    LOL!!!!!!!! Dakota used to but now Kenna definitely wins…She sits WAY back on her rear/back with her feet way out in front, showing off everything. She always lies on her back spread wide open…literally like she is airing out. She even falls asleep for hours in that position. The indian food sounds great! I’ve come across a lot of posts for easy naan recipes!! A few I found on Foodgawker!

    • Teri
      at

      your dogs are freaking hilarious!

      I’ve made naan before, it’s just never as good as the restaurant! I need to keep exploring obviously. 🙂

  • Jen
    at

    Love Indian food. We went to Bombay House the other day–ate waaay to much and then of course wasn’t hungry for like 24 hours after that. Jim is the BIG Indian food lover in the house, he could eat it every other day. He got really into it when we lived in NYC. They have middle eastern/indian carts on the street and he would go there for lunch every day. He loves matar paneer, tikka masala, and chana masala. I tried Chicken Makhani–heck yes. And of course we have to eat Garlic Naan and Mamosas!!

    • Teri
      at

      mmmm…. LOVE Bombay House!

  • Nicole @ yuppie yogini
    at

    Lol…your dog is in quite the position! I like Indian food but it’s rough on my stomach. I think my favorite part is the naan…love bread!

    • Teri
      at

      It’s roug on my stomach too if I get it at a restaurant. Sometimes I just have to deal with it ‘cuz I love it so much. This dish didn’t bother me though!

  • Anne @ Food Loving Polar Bear
    at

    I like Indian food, they always make lamb so well in Indian restaurants. I could eat Naan and raita sauce everyday! 🙂

    • Teri
      at

      I’ve never had lamb at an Indian restaurant. I think that needs to change!

  • andi
    at

    my dog is currently sleeping next to my husband with her head on my pillow.

    so yes. 🙂

  • Beth @ bethcooks
    at

    OMG. I love her! My boxer is equally as silly….she cracks me up daily! Can’t even wait for college football…..YES!

  • lindsay
    at

    Teri, Have you tried Tasty Bites? For some reason I have an aversion to cooking Indian Food and so they are right up my alley. Plus, most of them are vegetarian/vegan, gluten free, or kosher. Double plus, they sell them at Costco.

    http://www.tastybite.com/

    • Teri
      at

      I’ve never even heard of them! I’ll have to check them out at my Costco run – thanks!

      I’m excited for our football party tomorrow!

  • Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter
    at

    Omigosh your dog is too funny! My dogs would never sit like that.

    I love ALL Indian. I honestly don’t have a favorite.

  • Nichole
    at

    HAAAAAAA, does your dog sit like a slut, omg that’s hysterical.

    College football is here!!! And thanks for that visual, lol.

    • Teri
      at

      I know…we’re working with her. She needs to learn to be a lady. 😉

  • [email protected]
    at

    I have never had Indian food. I gotta get on board!

    My dogs are boys, but the blue heeler likes to lick “himself” when he gets excited. Pretty weird and a little disturbing.

    • Teri
      at

      that is disturbing! haha!

  • christina
    at

    i am seriously laughing so hard right now that tears are bursting out of my eyes. you called your dog a slut. omg. seriously …going to pee now before i pee on my chair from laughing too much.

    • Teri
      at

      hahahahah! I love that this cracked you up so much. 🙂

  • Caitlin
    at

    Oh. My. Gosh. I just had to write after seeing your dog. So hilarious, and my dog does the same thing…sleeping on his back, legs sprawled everywhere 🙂 Thank you for sharing (and your recipe looks amazing, I’m going to star it now).

  • Paula
    at

    She’s so cute! None of our dogs sit like that, but I have a cat that does. I saw a really cute video on Facebook of a bulldog watching TV sitting up like that. Did you see it?

  • Laura @ Blogging Over Thyme
    at

    Haha, I love that picture! My cat sits like a human too–I actually just put a similar picture of him up on my blog just the other day.

    I’m definitely not an Indian food virgin–it’s one of my favorite cuisines. But I do need to make more Indian food in the kitchen, rather than going out for it for the most part. There is a great Indian cookbook called Curry by Vivek Singh, you should check it out!

  • Katie
    at

    I really love Indian food too, but have (embarrassingly) never tried it at home! I’ve always been a little scurred. But your recipe looks easy and delish.

    Also, my dog is ridiculous too! When she sleeps on the floor, she lays on her back with all 4 paws up in the air like she’s dead. It’s hilarious, and I laugh about it every single day.

  • Tracey
    at

    Oh my gosh. I just took a picture of my dog sitting exactly like yours. No joke, same pose sitting on the couch with my husband while watching TV!

    My favorite Indian food dish is Chicken Tikka Masala. Yum!

  • janetha g.
    at

    HAHAHAHAHA that is the best photo i have seen all week! i love it! yes my penny dog sits like that, totally normal 🙂 indian food looks yummy, i need to make it at home more often since it is so expensive.

  • Sarah from 20somethingcupcakes
    at

    Can you believe I’ve never even eaten Indian food…let alone cook it. I really want to do both! But apparently there is no good Indian food around here. So I’ve been watching Aarti Party.

  • highonhealthy
    at

    Ahaha.. oh wow. Maizey is quite the little lady. 😉 Brandi (my pup) has never say quite like that but she loves to lay on her back with her privates exposed to the world.

    Annnd.. I’m still an Indian food virgin. 🙁 I really need to get that cherry popped.

  • Tori @ FIToriBLOG.com
    at

    I LOVE THE LAST PIC OF YOUR DOGGIE!

  • andi
    at

    haha! Guinness is certainly a whore, too. he sits like Maizey is quite frequently, lol. and sometimes when I go to pet him he rolls onto his back and spreads his legs. dogs crack me up!!

    and yeahhhh college football. my (Michigan) Wolverines suck lately, but I don’t care. it’s football season. love it!

  • betsy
    at

    Tooo funny! Yes, I had a dachshund that swore she was a human. Dogs are great!

    We made Tikki Marsala last night for the first time. Funny to read your post this morning. We love it. It was easy and filling. Do you buy jarred sauce? We did and thought it was great.

  • whitney
    at

    I’m dabbling into the indian world some of it still scares me but NOT that NAAN.

    Naan bread takes my breath away. I love your comment about your dog. Dog’s have minds of their own I swear

  • Tanya @ Life with the Kummerow
    at

    I literally laughed out loud when I saw the photo of your dog! I am an Indian food virgin, but I am now inspired to try it out. My sister was just telling me about naan…I guess I need to go soon!

  • Melinda
    at

    I love indian food but we don’t have any good places around here to eat. Btw your dog is hilarious- I haven’t ever seen a dog sit like that! lol