Cholar Dal or Bengal gram lentil Traditional Bengali style meal isn’t quite complete without a serving of this delicious lentil dish cooked with Bengal split gram or channa dal. Sometimes all you’d like is just a simple and soulful meal for lunch or dinner.
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For almost every Bengali it’s an absolute drool over the dish. This dal has a slightly sweetish taste in conjunction with a spicy aftertaste. One of the foremost basic dish but this has my heart. This dal could also be a standard Bengali dish prepared from channa dal, ghee, coconut, and other spices and is best paired with luchi or steamed rice.
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History of Cholar Dal
It is often made for special occasions like weddings during festivals like Durga puja after giving Anjali (Prayers to goddess Durga) we’ve it. It is a really common dish during Saraswati puja. Cholar dal is usually not prepared runny, it’s made thick If you’re having with poori.
The slow cooking technique started in medieval India. The technique was called dum phukt (slow cooking in steam) that raised the status of this dal specially channa dal within the royal kitchen. Royal cooks served not just the opposite dal, but channa dal to the emperor.
What’s beautiful is that each grain of dal is cooked and separate to make sure the dal was nothing but in need of perfection.
About Cholar Dal
Cholar dal is made with channa dal which is flavored with dollops of ghee, fried coconuts, cashews, raisins, and a medley of whole spices like bay leaves, cloves, cardamom, and cinnamon, and actually some hing (asafoetida). Must add fried coconut bits which provide an honest texture to this rich dal.
This dal is slightly sweet and fragrant because of the addition of whole spices or garam masala and flavored with fried coconut, cashews, and raisins. It tastes mildly spicy and filled with nutrition. A vegan-friendly, healthy delicious option.
Usually, onion garlic isn’t added but gingers sing well with the dish. The dish is a little sweet, fragrant, and mildly spicy it’s delicious nutritious.
Health Benefits Of Cholar Dal
They are an excellent source of vegetarian protein. Keeps your heart healthy and it’s an excellent food for diabetics. They’re high in fiber so now you’ll understand having this delicious dal may be a boon for our body and soul.
There are many health benefits like they’re a great source of zinc, folate, calcium, protein, low in fat content, are often easily digested, a rich antioxidants,s and a really good source of vitamins, provides energy.
Important Suggestions To Keep In Mind
- Soaking the channa dal 1 hour before makes the cooking process in no time.
- No cholar or channa dal is complete without fried coconuts bits.
- If channa dal becomes thick after boiling you’ll add water later at the time of cooking.
- Add fried cashews for garnishing it adds an upscale look to the present dish.
- Do not forget to feature 1 tbsp sugar in the present dish depends on the number of channa dal you’re using.
Make Cholar Dal In Instant pot
- Place all the ingredients required in instant pot.
- Set valve to sealing and close the lid carefully.
- Adjust the time to 10 minute and cook on high pressure by pressing it manually.
- After that let the pressure releases naturally.
- At least wait for 15 minutes till the pressure valve goes down.
- Then press cancel button. Then you can take a pan and fry the diced cocunuts and then add to the instant pot and stir.
Channel dal is ready to be served
Check Out the Cholar Dal Recipe video :
Basic Serving Tips
Cholar Dar is typically paired or accompanied with Karaishutir kachori, luchi, roti, paratha, and steamed rice in conjunction with gandhoraj lebu (Special scented Bengali lemon).
This dish is often enjoyed for breakfast lunch or dinner. If you prefer you will have a slightly thin consistency if having with steamed rice. If you’re having with luchi make it a little thick.
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How to make Cholar Dal step by step with photo
- In a pressure cooker add the soaked channa dal along with water and salt and pressure cook for 2 whistles. Your time may vary. The channa dal should be soft but not mushy. It should still retain the shape. The dal will be thick at this point. Take out keep aside.
2. Take a mini mixing bowl make a spice by mixing together the ginger paste, cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, red chilly powder with 6 tbsp water. Also, slice the coconut and chop in small pieces, and crush the green chilies.
3. Meanwhile in a pan heat on medium add mustard oil and when it smokes fry the coconut pieces until golden brown. Take it out and keep it aside.
4. In the same pan add cashews fry till golden brown. Take out and keep aside.
5. Now temper it with bay leaves, dried red chili, cinnamon, cardamoms, cloves, cumin seeds, and hing. Allow it to fry for 10 seconds.
6. Add the spice paste we made earlier to the pan. Fry on medium heat until the raw smell goes away from the spices. Saute for 5 minutes.
7. Add crushed green chilly and saute. Then add raisins, and continue frying until you see oil separates from the sides.
8. Add boiled dal and then add salt to taste. Combine well. Add hot water as I added here (if need) and mix well. Cook for 7 min till dal thickens.
9. Add sugar, garam masala, and ghee to it. At this point If serving with rice then make it thin If with luchi / paratha make it thick. Your choice 😊
10. Add fried coconuts and cashews or after taking out garnish with fried cashews.
11. Heat off cover and rest and then serve it hot with steamed rice or luchi of your choice. Enjoy 😊
Note: A rough estimate of nutrition is provided.
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