Methi & Lemon Spiced Dal (IP recipe)

Our meal bowl today was complete with dhal, millets, cucumbers and a simple salad.

This rather simple version of dhal is completely oil free, and make in the instant pot! Inexpensive, uses easy pantry ingredients, and can be put together in under 30 minutes. These are my favorite kind of meals!

I kept the salad simple with shredded broccoli stem, carrots, soy sprouts and greens tossed in pepper, salt and extra virgin olive oil. You can use any salad vegetable you have on hand, even add some spinach, lettuce or tomatoes.

Anytime we have dhal, there has to be sliced cucumbers on the side. The cool and crunchy cucumber is absolutely perfect with warm spiced dhal. Indian food and salads are meant to be together!


Ingredients for dhal:
serves 4
1/2 cup whole green mung
1/2 cup split yellow mung
1/2 cup masoor (red lentils)
2 bunches of scallions/green onions, chopped (discard bottom inch with roots)
1 serrano pepper, finely chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander powder
2 tbsp dried fenugreek leaves
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp asafoetida powder
Juice from 1 lemon
A handful of cilantro, finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp coarse salt

Ingredients for millets:
1 cup millets (I use samo millets, or regular yellow millets)
2 1/4 cups water

Wash the lentils in hot water thoroughly a few times until the water runs somewhat clear. Feel free to use any lentils you have available.

To the instant pot, add washed lentils along with 3 cups of water.

Chop up the serrano, green onions, tomatoes, green bell peppers, and cilantro. Add all the chopped veggies to the lentils & water. Save some cilantro to add in the end.

Add all the spices except the fenugreek leaves; i.e cumin, coriander, asafoetida, and turmeric powders. Also add salt. Mix everything well.

Set instant pot vent to ‘sealed’ and hit ‘manual’ and set time for 15 minutes. In high pressure. Once the time is complete, let it rest for another 10 mins. Carefully release all remaining pressure by releasing the vent.

Remove from heat, and add the fenugreek leaves and squeeze fresh lemon juice in the end. Both these ingredients are so fragrant and shouldn’t be cooked over heat for too long! Sprinkle reserved cilantro on top and its done!

Add a few extra tablespoons of water if the dhal is thick and make it any consistency you prefer.

You could use any electric pressure cooker, or just a regular stove top pressure cooker to make this too.

Directly on the stove top works as well, it’ll probably take double the time since the types of lentils I’ve used are heartier ones. Also make sure you have a cast iron, or a heavy bottomed vessel if making it fully stove top without a pressure cooker.


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