maa chole ki dal or maa choleyan di daal is a staple dal made in every punjabi house hold.
when i first heard the name, i was laughing. i did not even know that such a dal exists with such a name. maa here in this dal means black gram or urad dal. chole is bengal gram or chana dal. in punjabi we call this dal as ‘maa chollon di dal‘.
many delicious dal recipes of india are made by combining two or more dals. e.g. rajasthani panchmel dal. this punjabi dal is one more fine example of preparing a yummy dal recipe by combining the two lentils, which i have mentioned before. both the dals are split. but the black gram have their skins on.
the end result is a smooth dal with a creamy texture from the black gram and a subtle nutty sweetness from the chana dal.
this maa chole ki dal is minimally spiced. we don’t over spice this dal with spices, but do use a fair amount of onion, ginger, garlic and green chilies. they do add some depth to the dal in terms of taste and flavors. so that the dal does not become bland.
if you have ever eaten food in gurudwaras or langars, then this maa chole ki dal will remind you of the dal served in gurudwaras. the dal served there have a slight thick consistency and sweet in taste.
this maa choleyan di daal is a filling dal and should be eaten hot with rice, roti or parathas. the dal is also very heavy.
i have learnt to make this dal from my mil, who has been making this way for many years. this is a family favorite recipe that i am sharing. i usually first temper the spices, etc and then add the lentils. sometimes, my mil makes a one pot dal. she does not temper. just adds all the ingredients in the pressure cooker along with the butter or ghee and lets the dal cook.
you can also cook maa chole ki dal in a pot. just that they will take a longer time to cook. if cooking in a pot, the soak the dal for 45 mins or 1 hour before cooking. the quantity of water should be adjusted when cooking in a pot. use a thick bottomed pot, so that the cooked dal does not stick at the bottom.
maa chole di dal recipe details below:
- ½ cup split urad dal with skin/split black gram
- ½ cup chana dal/splitskinned bengal gram
- 3 cups water for pressure cooking
- ¾ to 1 cup water to be added later or as required
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 small tomatoes, finely chopped
- 2-3 garlic/lahsun, finely chopped
- ½ inch ginger/adrak, finely chopped
- 1 or 2 green chilies/hari mirch, finely chopped
- ¼ tsp cumin/jeera
- ¼ or ⅓ tsp turmeric powder/haldi
- ¼ tsp red chili powder/lal mirch powder
- a pinch of asafoetida/hing
- a generous pinch of punjabi garam masala or garam masala
- 2 tbsp oil or ghee or butter
- salt as required
- pick and rinse both the dal. keep aside. in a pressure cooker, heat oil. brown the cumin seeds first.
- then add onions and fry them till light brown. add the ginger, garlic and green chilies.
- fry for about 15-20 seconds or till the raw aroma of the ginger and garlic goes away.
- add the tomatoes and saute till the tomatoes become soft and pulpy.
- now add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, asafoetida and garam masala.
- fry for 4-5 seconds. add both the dals and stir well. pour water and add salt.
- stir and pressure cook for 8-9 whistles or more till the both the dals are cooked.
- when the pressure settles down on its own, check the dal.
- if they are not cooked completely and the water has dried up, then add about 1 cup water and pressure cook for a few whistles more. both the lentils should become soft.
- open the lid when the pressure settles down and simmer the dal for a few more minutes till you get a smooth consistency.
- the dal should not be watery but smooth.
- mash a few cooked lentils with the back of a spoon when the dal is simmering.
- check the seasoning and add more of the spice powders and salt if required.
- once done, garnish with coriander leaves and serve the maa chole ki dal hot with steamed rice.