Indian Dahl with Spinach
This is a very yummy, authentic dal. For variation, add coconut milk towards the end of cooking. Freezes well.
This is a very yummy, authentic dal. For variation, add coconut milk towards the end of cooking. Freezes well.
I tried this recipe once a few weeks ago and was moderately happy with the results. I tried it again last night, but made a few adjustments: I started to saute the onions first (and added 3/4 tspn curry powder) and let them caramelize (about 20 minutes on low.) I added a pouch of vegetable buillon to the boiling water, doubled the salt and used 3/4 tspn chili powder instead of the 1/2 tspn in the recipe. Lastly, I used 1 package frozen, chopped spinach (thawed and drained), and 3/4 cup plain (NOT vanilla) yogourt. My boyfriend grew up eating Indian food, and I was put on a pedestal after making this dish! I served with whole wheat tortillas as I didn't have naan or roti available. This (adjusted version) recipe is now forever in my collection and I know it will be well-received by all. Yeah for me! :)Read More
I tried this recipe once a few weeks ago and was moderately happy with the results. I tried it again last night, but made a few adjustments: I started to saute the onions first (and added 3/4 tspn curry powder) and let them caramelize (about 20 minutes on low.) I added a pouch of vegetable buillon to the boiling water, doubled the salt and used 3/4 tspn chili powder instead of the 1/2 tspn in the recipe. Lastly, I used 1 package frozen, chopped spinach (thawed and drained), and 3/4 cup plain (NOT vanilla) yogourt. My boyfriend grew up eating Indian food, and I was put on a pedestal after making this dish! I served with whole wheat tortillas as I didn't have naan or roti available. This (adjusted version) recipe is now forever in my collection and I know it will be well-received by all. Yeah for me! :)
I have recently switched to a vegetarian diet and am collecting good vegetarian recipes. I have been looking for a good dahl recipe and this is it! After reading the other reviews, I tripled the salt, doubled the tumeric and cumin and added a little red pepper. My husband, a meat eater, was ranting and raving about wonderful this dish was. I served it wtih naan and rice. I have sent this recipe to friends who asked for it. Definately a keeper! Will make it again and again...Thanks for the recipe Gillian!
I have made this recipe three times so far and it tastes very good. I made it twice with brown lentils (supermarket variety) without spinach or coconut milk. It tasted great but the cooking time was about 40 min rather than 20 min because of the different type of lentil. Just be aware of this if you are using brown lentils. The brown lentils retained their shape, which I liked, but it might not be as authentic. I also made it once with red lentils and spinach (no coconut milk). It was again very tasty, but there was WAY too much water called for. The red lentils (as expected) broke down in texture and cooked very quickly, but I had to cook at least an extra 20 minutes to get rid of the extra water. I only used 6 oz. spinach too, so I imagine if you add all the spinach there might be more water in there. Just realize when you make this recipe you may have to play with the timing or water amounts the first time. I'll make it again with brown lentils, cooking for about 40 minutes. Tastes great!
I have had 3 bowls of this! This is incredible and one would swear it came from an Indian restuarant. I had Masoor Dal (split red lentils) which cuts down on the cooking time. Only had frozen spinach and added 1 package. Did not have coconut milk so added a handful of unsweetened coconut and then stirred in a heaping tbsp. yogurt at the end. The blend of spices is incredible! The only addition of spice I used was 1/2 tsp. curry powder but kept all the other spices and measurements the same. Didn't do lentils in seperate pan. Just added them to the onion/garlic/mustard seed saute. Used 'roasted garlic chicken broth' in lieu of water. About half way thru I added spices and then spinach at the end. I had a bowl without the spinach and that was equally as good. I'd prepare this again and again even if I didn't have spinach. Served over Basmati rice that I dressed up with some whole cloves, onion flakes, green peas, and safrin. A+++ thanks for the recipe!
The rating is with the changes made from suggestions here. I doubled the spices, used broth instead of water. I didn't carmelize the onions, however, which wasn't missed. I tasted the dahl before I added the coconut milk (very tasty!), and then added the coconut milk. The addition of the coconut milk made it a tiny bit richer, but certaintly not sweeter. I wonder if the previous reviewer who was so disappointed with the addition of the coconut milk used sweeted coconut milk? It turned out wonderfully. Btw, this makes 4 main course helpings, not 4 side dish helpings, as I quickly learned from having doubled the recipe!
Looks good. A bit of change in cooking. After butter melts add mustard seeds first. Let tem pop then add cumin seeds,let them brown, then add onins.
Really, really tasty! I substituted yogurt for the coconut milk and halved the amount of butter, and it was still great!
I've been looking for a dahl recipe for awhile and this one turned out really good. I made it more of a Chana Saag though. Which means that I added more spinach and chickpeas. I also added more salt(1tea), more garam masala(1tab) and a little red pepper(1tea). I eat Indian food alot, so this recipe will certainly become a part of my rotation of dinner meals.
I have a boyfriend who is 1/2 Indian. He was so surprised when I made this along with some curried chicken. He said it tasted very authentic and came quite close to his own mother's ... Now that's a compliment !!! I loved it as well. I did add a bit of chana masala and crushed red pepper as we both like spicy food and to give it a bit more "zap". As it cooked I tasted it and added more of each of the spices to kick it up a bit. I recommend it highly !!!!
This recipe was really good. I added the extra spices like the others suggested, but I kind of wish I hadn't. I think they mask the taste of the lentils and spinach too much.
You do need to cook gently all the spices in oil first - to make it easier on sensitive tummies. Then add the onions, etc. This method also makes the end result more aromatic. Certainly dahl spinach soup is soul warming on a cold day. :)
This has become a family staple, although with a few modifications that I've worked out over time. Try my modifications, you might like it even better! First, I use regular lentils (not red lentils) because red lentils are too mushy. Regular lentils come in a package of 2 cups, instead of the 1.5 cups called for in the recipe, so I up the amounts of the spices by about 1/3, and double the salt (it needs it!). I use cayenne pepper instead of chili pepper which gives it a nice zing, and I add a 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes. I increase the water to 4.5 cups, and use an entire can of lite coconut milk. Also, I cook it in a pressure cooker, so it cooks up fast! First I brown the onion in the butter in the pressure cooker, adding in all the spices to coat the browned onion. Then I add the tomatoes, lentils, water and fresh spinach, close it up and put it on the heat, and once the weight starts jiggling, set the timer for 20 minutes. Once it's done I let it cool, remove the top and add the coconut milk. I make this about once a week, and we eat the leftovers all week.
I added chickpeas and edamame to this recipe to make it more filling...amazing!
I had to add more turmeric, salt and chili powder, but what a fabulous dish! I don't generally like cooked spinach unless it's just wilted with some bacon, olive oil and pine nuts, but this dish was so good I had seconds!
My family enjoyed this recipe. To reduce it to one pot, I fried the mustard seeds in butter, then added the onions. Once the onions were softened, I mixed in all the other spices (doubled the cumin). Then in went the water, drained lentils, spinach (two 10-oz packages, squeezed semi-dry), and 1 tsp salt. Once the lentils were done, I added light coconut milk. To make it more spicy, you can substitute cayenne pepper for the chili powder.
This was a cooking disaster for me. I used slightly thawed frozen spinach. I had to add more spices to compensate for the extra water that comes in frozen spinach. Even then I couldn't save the dish as I had to cook the dahl longer until it turned like pea soup. I'll try fresh spinach next time and change my review appropriately.
This was absolutely fabulous. I did not have mustard seed so I used ground mustard. I took the hint from another reviewer and carmelized the onions, and I added the garam masala to the onions and let it cook in, and I added just a little more for punch. The yogurt was a nice addition. Did not use the milk. Ate it alone but will probably serve over brown rice. This is the best Dahl I've had so far.
I gave this 4 stars as I followed a lot of the other reviews to make it more flavoursome. I used 2 cups of vegetable stock to cook the lentils and the rest water. I didn't add the salt as the stock was salty enough for me. Frozen spinach defrosted worked well. I doubled the spices and also toasted the garam masala with the onion to bring out the flavour more. I didn't find it spicy and would up the chilli next time maybe add a fresh chilli with the onion. I added 2 cloves of garlic with the onion as well. I didn't add the coconut milk either but ate it with raita (plain yoghurt with chopped up cucumber and lemon juice) and basmati rice. Makes a lot and makes you feel good that you're eating something so good for you!
Very good, quick and extremy well liked by all.
I really liked this served with Jasmine Rice. I read the other reviews after I tasted it and realized it was a little bland. I added a lot more salt to satisfy my taste but I generally do not need much salt to satisfy my taste. I doubled the Garam Masala and the chili powder. Next time I will use the suggestion of the other reviews and double all the spices and use vegetable broth in place of the water. It smelled good cooking. Mmm!
I made this tonight for my husband who is from Mumbai. It turned out beautifully delicious. My husband loved it; said it reminded him of home. I plan on making this again and again. It goes great with naan. Thank you for giving us this recipe.
We loved this dahl. My husband worked in India for two months, and he said this recipe was very authentic. I used curry paste instead of all the spices, and we thought it was better with a bit of salt and a tablespoon of sugar. Served over basmati rice with naan bread, it makes a great and fiberful meal.
I increased garam masala to 1 tablespoon, increased salt to 1 tsp., added chickpeas, and used frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained. I tried some with and without plain yogurt (instead of coconut milk), and preferred it without the yogurt. Very good!!
This was very good--creamy and flavorful, a nice comfort food. I followed other reviewers' suggestions and used vegetable broth instead of water, but I didn't double the spices because I wanted to try it as is first (although I did double the salt). We both thought the flavor was good, but my boyfriend, who's taken an Indian cooking class, thought it could use more spices, so next time I'll bump them up. Instead of butter, I used unrefined coconut oil that I picked up at a great Indian market. Most coconut oils (especially refined ones) don't really have a flavor, but this one has a smoky hint that was delicious with the dahl. With the current E. coli scare, I couldn't find fresh spinach anywhere, so I used escarole, which has a similar texture when cooked. I can't wait to try it with spinach.
Great dahl. Easy to make. I added to the finishing (onion and spices) 2 cloves of garlic and a whole grated tomato (discard skin). Excellent!
I love love love Dahl and this one is fantastic! I have made it at least a half dozen times since I found it. Even the kids devour it.
I couldn't get red lentils, but green lentils worked well. I took everyone's advice and doubled the spices and added some vegetable broth, and really loved this recipe!
This recipe is delicious, even without spinach. The coconut milk really adds something.
This was yummy. :) Added a few tablespoons of plain yogurt to make it a bit creamier.
I'm always looking to save time, so I skipped the soaking step, and didn't bother chopping the spinach. The dish turned out very well and was huge. We ate this for three days.
Fantastic! Just made this for lunch and will make again and again. I made exactly as written.
I'm on an Indian food kick, and trying to learn how to reproduce it for myself at home. This recipe was really good....but seemed to be missing something--a kick. I added a good amount of salt to mine; I would suggest doubling the amount called for. I also used frozen spinach and reserved the water from thawing it to boil with my lentils. That probably added both to the nutrition count and the flavor. I'll probably make this one again, and do some experimentation with it!
Fantastic recipe that even the carnivores loved! The spices need tweaking though- I had to increase them because it was a otherwise a little bland. What really made a difference though was a bit of lemon juice... Once these alterations were made I vowed to make it regularly!
I love the flavor of this dish!! It's not much to look at, but it's delicious. The balance of spices is perfect (though I add a bit less chili powder than called for so my 1.5-year-old can enjoy it more). I've found that using split red lentils requires less than the full amount of water called for, or else it's too watery (maybe 2.5 cups instead of 3.5). Yum! My mouth is watering just thinking of it! :)
This was quite nice. I followed the advice of other reviewers and doubled the spices, otherwise I used the same ingredients as directed. I didn't go for the two pan method though. It seemed a little unecessary. I will be making it again.
I followed the advice of other reviewers and doubled all the spices, used 1 tbsp olive oil instead of butter, reduced the water to 3 cups, and left out the coconut milk. I also used frozen chopped spinach instead of fresh. As I totally forgot to rinse and soak the lentils, I actually needed to add more water and cook for a lot longer. It turned out really well after all the alterations and we had it for dinner with brown rice.
I took the advice of previous review and increased salt and spices, and this was very good. It does make alot, so we are freezing some. My husband made sure I put this on the "to make again" list!
I love dahl and spinach and coconut - so I already knew I'd like this! I doubled the spices, added a little more than called for coconut milk, and thought it was just good that night. I had it again for lunch, and its really really good! The spices really blend together well overnight!
We really enjoyed this. I only had about 1 cup of lentils and a 9oz. bag of baby spinach, so that's what I used. I added enough water to cover the lentils by about 1 inch, and then added 1 cube of vegetable bouillon to the water, as recommended by others. I followed the recipe for everything else. This had nice Indian flavors, and we served ours over rice. A nice, healthy, meatless meal. Hubs loved it! Thanks for sharing.
I followed the recipe exactly, except I can't have chili powder so I omitted that. I actually felt the spice level and salt to be good as written. It is missing a zip. I am not sure what I did wrong. I used the coconut milk you purchase in the refrigerator section, so I don't know if it would have turned out better with the canned coconut milk. The yogurt idea is fabulous but I also can't have dairy (I am a walking food disaster-- hard to find recipes!) It is not bad, just missing a zip in my opinion. Maybe I'll try adding some fresh squeezed lemon before serving?
This recipe is missing something. If you look at past reviews, you'll notice that most of the reviewers who enjoyed this dish made some modification. I recommend following some of this past advice. I felt that the dish lacked depth, not heat, but something else -- carmelizing the onions might help. My garam masala may not have been of a very good quality.
This is a great recipe with a few small modifications to taste. I increased the turmeric and chili and added about 1/2 tsp of cayenne. And I used yogurt because I had no coconut milk in the house. I also added a veggie bouillon cube at the beginning. It's very flavourful. And whoever uploaded the photo made a mistake. It doesn't look like this at all (no mushrooms for one thing). Look at the other photo to see what it looks like.
YUM! Tastes so much like the daal at my favorite Indian restaurant. Will be making again soon.
Great recipe! I made this as a side dish to an Indian meal, and the leftovers over brown rice as a meal in itself. Followed the recipe exactly.
My husband and I just started eating Indian food 2 years ago. Being new vegetarians we have been seeking out tasty Indian recipes and my husband and I both enjoyed this one. I did add some additional sea salt, but overall this was very easy to make.
This is very good. However, for my preferance the lentils need to cook about 10 - 15 min. longer than what recipe calls for. I add a tad more indian chili powder than what it calls for. I also like my Dahls to have a tomato base sometimes, so next time I make it I will also try adding tomato paste. I have made this several times and have played around with the amount of spices. my husband loves it 2 of my kids won't touch it (too spicy) and my other son will eat it he just adds plain yogurt to it if the spices get to hot.
This is a good start but I found it very bland, and I would say it makes a lot more than four servings. I would either increase the spices or halve the lentils and spinach. Also, the small amount of coconut milk makes no discernible difference and I would just as soon eat it with a spoonful of yogurt, rather than have half a can of coconut milk sitting around.
This dish has potential but did not turn out too great just by following the recipe. I would use less water next time and definitely more spice..especially curry powder. I will be trying this one again.
Great spice flavors and simplicity in preparation. I used 1.5 tsp salt and yogurt for the end. Highly satisfied family.
I followed the recipe to the letter so I don't know how it went wrong.
delicious! i used this recipe for my first attempt at dahl. i used half red lentils and half split yellow peas. i also didn't have any chili powder, mustard seed, or coconut milk; but added yogurt like another reviewer suggested. it was splended! and it made the house smell so good.
We thought this was okay. I have bags of lentils in my cupboard and I was trying to find something other than the lentil-soup standard. I followed the recipe, doubling the spices as suggested, while omitting the coconut milk because I was out. I felt the lentils were undercooked (even with a long time on the stove warming until hubby came home) and the flavor was just lacking. Maybe it was just a need for more salt, I'm not sure, but with as much cumin and chili powder as I put in, you'd think it would be more "wow". Anyway, we didn't hate it, but we didn't love it either. Thanks for the recipe.
Where's the FLAVA?! This recipe needs SALT and you could easily double the spices! But it's a good basic recipe and tasted delicious on some rice, accompanied by the sweet symphony of garlic naan. I also added some supporting notes of shredded carrots, chopped red pepper, chopped canned green chili (2), and chopped zucchini. Healthy and happy bellies!
Just a tad bit soupier than I expected, but very good flavors. Next time, I'll cut back on the water a bit. It was quite filling too. Hubby went back for seconds. Thanks for the recipe!
My family and I found this recipe to be bland. I've had it before in restaurants and it was sweat-inducing-hot, but not this recipe. I will try it again with more spices, and should have read the reviews first. This first try was disappointing though. Update: tried this again and with some changes it was much better-- used red lentils instead if brown (don't require extra water thus didn't dilute the spices), added extra of all spices, especially salt, and cooked the mustard seeds in butter first, then added onions and other spices like another review suggested. Still wasn't as spicy as I get from a restaurant, but good.
this is a tasty, mild dahl. made with variations that many others mentioned. -- used veggie broth in place of water. -- doubled all spices. -- added 1/2 tsp. yellow curry. wish i had -- doubled the fresh spinach. i like about equal parts lentils to spinach. with the current recipe there is not enough spinach for my taste.
I have made this several times with great success. It requires far more spices than called for in the recipe in order to give it any flavor, and I think using ghee instead of regular butter would really put it over the top. Thanks for a great base!
Great recipe. Made a little change to reduce butter. I put the can of coconut milk in fridge - when it's cold, the fat rises to the top so you can scoop it out. I reduced butter to 1 tsp. Simmered it with coconut fat with the spices and onions to make a paste of sorts, added in spinach after onions softened. Added in lentils, and added more of coconut milk (the watery part) as needed. I will make this again! Level of spices was perfect for me.
My hubbie and friends love it, I use split pea becuase I don't have red lentil and still it taste so good...
Wonderful dahl! Would definitely make this again.
Very hearty and delicious! (Also, quick to prepare and not that many dishes to wash afterward...) I omitted the coconut milk and increased the spices. Of course, keep in mind that the taste of this recipe can vary drastically, depending on spice freshness and quality, so taste as you go along.
This was a nice dahl dish. I didn't use the mustard seed and I used yogurt instead of coconut milk, and I liked this dish. Thanks.
Great base recipe, but it needs tweaking to make it great. I followed the spices initially, tasted the dahl, and decided it needed WAY more. I like lots of spices, so I added a blend of curry/garam masala/cumin to taste. I had to mustard seeds, so I added a pinch of dry mustard in its place. I added a dallop of plain yogurt at the end. Delicious!!
I made as is but made a dumb mistake of picking up coconut juice instead of coconut milk.. I still used it just to get some coconut flavor. It turned out REALLY good! I really liked this dish even though it is not anything like anything I had ever cooked before. Thanks for the wonderful recipe, will make again with actual coconut milk next time. BTW, this says 4 servings but we ended up with quite a lot leftover! luckily you say it freezes well, so that's what we did.
It was soooo good until I added the coconut milk. I used chicken broth instead of water and added a dash of cayenne to the lentils. Mmmmmm. Then I added that milk! Ruined! "Sniffle" I will try this again, but definitely without the milk.
Healthy and easy, but lacked the full flavor of the dishes served in Chicago restaurants. I experimented with more seasonings, to no avail. Perhaps a home made marsala is the only way to go. In desperation I tried garlic powder - cinamon and garlic together was a lethal Fear Factor brew - ewww.
This came out really good, I had to make more servings since I was cooking for a larger group and it came out really good.
This was a great dish, but a little bland when following the recipe exactly. Next time I'll add more salt and garam masala, and perhaps a dash of sugar. But overall, very good!!
I doubled the spices as others suggested - and I still found it to be kind of "meh". I think next time I'll add hot pepper of some sort and mushrooms to add a bit more body.
This didn't quite work for me. It turned out very soupy. The flavors were good together. I'll have to try it again.
Incredible tasting! Serve it over rice, with a side of naan and everyone is impressed! My boyfriend did not like this dish when we went to an indian restaraunt, but ADORED it when I made it! Thank you!
was a nice curry...
This is an easy to make, wonderful recipe with great flavor! I used chicken broth instead of water. I made the mistake of adding salt on top of this so I would recommend using broth and then omitting the salt. Thanks for the awesome recipe!
I really like this dish. Spinach tastes yummy in red lentils. I added small amounts of chopped fresh garlic and ginger. Thanks for sharing this recipe!
I love Indian food and dahl is probably my most favourite dish. This is a great recipe. I agree that additonal spices are needed for flavour, but the texture and consistency were perfect. I followed the recipe precisely, but added more salt. It will become a regular at our house. Yum!
This was so good. I've made it 3 times. The last time I forgot to add the coconut milk and it was still fantastic.
I should have read the reviews before making this. I followed the recipe exactly as written, and it was pretty bland. Definitely needed more salt, more spice, and less spinach.
This was ok.. I put the coconut milk in it, and it turned out too sweet.
This was great! I used frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained, as I find the consistency smoother than fresh, for recipes like this and palak paneer. It looks a bit sketchy after you add the spinach, but no more so than other creamed spinach recipes. Made a double batch, and tripled the spices, and brought to a pot luck- got rave reviews. It was also good without the spinach. Thanks for the recipe.
My family loved these lentils. I did substitute part heavy cream and plain yogurt instead of the coconut milk. I also used vegetable broth instead of water as others suggested. I had to cook the lentils longer than the recipe suggested so I added more water. I will definitely make them again with the Indian Style Basmati Rice also on this site.
I was craving Indian food and made this recipe. It was awesome with a little rice and a cup of Chai (I found a concentrate in the ethnic food aisle - just heat with milk)! I'm taking half of the leftovers for lunch tomorrow and freezing the other half.
My fiance spent some time in India as a kid, and is a huge fan of dahl. He loved this recipe. I give it five stars.
Very simple, very yummy. I made it with Gobi Aloo and Chapatis. Just remember to buy coconut MILK, not coconut CREAM, like I did one time. :]
My first time trying a Dahl and this website. What a great start! I took the advice of others and doubled the spices, except instead of doubling chilli powder I added an equal amount of cayenne pepper. I used lite coconut milk by Thai kitchen and it added depth and wasn't too sweet. I used water, not veg. stock and it was pleanty spicy.
This was great, and so easy! I used 1/4 tsp. chili powder because I don't like spicy dishes. I used only 1/2 onion, and thought it was plenty. I also decreased the butter to 1 Tbl. (didn't need any more), and omitted the coconut milk because I didn't have any. It wasn't missed! Thanks for the recipe!
Oh my goodness! I took the other's suggestions and doubled all the spices. I only had canned spinach so I drained that and it was fabulous! My dh that doesn't like Indian food had 3 helpings of this with the Indian spiced basmati and the naan recipe. Yummy!
I made this for dinner tonight and used half pound frozen spinach but otherwise made the recipe as written. I enjoyed it but like others, felt it could of used more flavour. Next time I will add some more spices or use stock instead of water.
delicous! very easy to make, and will make again.
Nice flavor, but a bit watery- next time I will decrease the water by 1/2 cup. Definitely add more salt, cumin and turmeric. This would be good served over potatoes.
This was a yummy meal on a cold snowy day. I didn't have turmeric or mustard seed so I used a bit extra garam masala, chili powder and cumin. I mixed in about a cup of rice and served with naan. Yum! Will definitely try to have the other spices on hand next time, too snowy to go out tonight.
Loved it- so tasty and easy to make! Great recipe.
We love Indian food and are always trying new recipies. I love various dahls and this one is an easy winner.
Just like what my friend from Kerala makes. I added some coriander powder,ginger powder and 2 teaspoons of curry paste. I also put it in a chicken broth base. But used the coconut milk very authentic. I like the recipe
I loved this recipe. I made it really spicy and had a yogurt/garlic dip I made on the side. MMMMMMM
Healthy but tasted better a day later with added jar of homemade salsa, sriracha, and sour cream.
Great recipe. I added chicken broth and was glad I did. Otherwise I would have added salt. Delicious. Simple and authentic.