Pakistan – Dal Chawal

By Arbaz Khan


Dal chawal is a traditional dish of Pakistan and India. It is originated in Indian Subcontinent. Dal chawal consists of boiled rice and lentils. The word dal means lentils and chawal means rice. People use various varieties of lentils to make this dish. dal chawal is a dish high is fiber and protein. Dal chawal is popular in many countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal. It is not wrong to say that dal chawal is popular all over Asia. In India this dish is called as dal bhat. The word bhat means boiled rice. Traditionally dal is cooked with many spices like ginger, cumin seeds and garlic etc. This dish is very common in Punjab. People of Punjab eat this dish as lunch, dinner and even as breakfast. Dal chawal is also a road side food. In Pakistan dal chawal is available in many roadside stalls especially in Islamabad and Lahore which are cities of Pakistan. This yellow colored dish is one of the most famous dishes of Pakistan. In this dish we use arhar dal which is called as pigeon peas along with boiled rice and chatni (sauce). Because sauce is made with ginger it is called as ginger sauce. Traditionally this dish is served with rice and sauce.

Ingredients of arhar dal (pigeon peas)

  • Arhar dal (pigeon peas) = 1.5 cups
  • Haldee powder (turmeric powder) = 1 teaspoon
  • Adrak aur lehsan paste (ginger and garlic paste) = 1 teaspoon
  • Pani (water) = 1 liter
  • Lal mirch pissi hui (red chili crushed) = half teaspoon or to taste
  • Chopped tamatar (tomato) = 1
  • Namak (salt) = 1 teaspoon or to taste
  • Curry pattay (curry leaves) = 15
  • Laal mirchain (whole red chilies) = 4
  • Tayl (oil) = 4 tablespoon
  • Lehsan (garlic) = 3
  • Zeera (cumin seeds) = 1.5 teaspoon
  • Chopped piaz (chopped onion) = 1

Ingreients for chatni (sauce)

  • Pani (water) = half cup
  • Leemo (lemon juice) = 1 tablespoon
  • Zeera (cumin seeds) = 1 tablespoon
  • Lehsan (garlic pieces) = 1 cup
  • Namak (salt) = to taste
  • Sirka (vinegar) = 1.5 tablespoon
  • Kismish (raisins) = half cup
  • Lal mirchain (red chilies) = 5
  • Gurr (jiggery) = 4 tablespoon
  • Tayl (oil) = 3 tablespoon
  • Crushed lal mirchain (crushed red chilies) = to taste

Ingredients for chawal (rice)

  • Chawal (rice) = 1kg
  • Pani (water) = 1 liter
  • Tayl (oil) = 1 tablespoon
  • Namak (salt) = 1 tablespoon
  • Piaz (onion) = 1

Procedure for arhar daal (pigeon peas)

  • Take a bowl and fill it with water. Add given quantity of arhar dal (pigeon peas) in water and soak for 1 hour.
  • Take a frying pan and fill it with water. Now add soaked arhar dal (pigeon peas) in water and boil it.
  • When it boils remove scum.
  • Now take another frying pan and add the given quantity of red chili powder, ginger and garlic paste, turmeric powder and chopped tomato.
  • Mix the spices until a mixture is formed.
  • Cook the mixture on medium flame for approximate 60 minutes.
  • Gently mash it with hand masher and place aside.
  • Take frying pan and put it on flame. Add cooking oil. When it becomes warm add ginger and onion in it and fry it.
  • After that add red chilies in the oil and fry them for 1 minute.
  • After frying red chilies add curry leaves and cumin seeds in oil and again fry it.
  • After frying all the material pour the fried mixture in arhar dal (pigeon peas).
  • Mix arhar dal (pigeon seeds) and cook for 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Arhar dal (pigeon peas) is ready!

Procedure for chawal (rice)

  • Take a frying pan and add few spoon of oil in it. After 5 minutes add onion in oil and fry it.
  • Now add 1 liter water, 1 kg rice and salt in fried onion and cook until water dry.
  • When water dries set flame to low and cook under pressure for approximate 15 minutes.
  • Rice is ready!

Procedure for chatni (sauce)

  • Take a blender and fill the blender with all spices like cumin seeds, jiggery, garlic pieces, red chilies, raisins, salt and red chili (crushed).
  • Blend all the spices and take out the mixture on a bowl.
  • Add lemon juice, water and vinegar in the mixture and mix it.
  • Take a frying pan and put on medium flame and add cooking oil in it. Add blended paste like mixture and mix it.
  • Cook the mixture for approximate 5 minute.
  • Take the chatni (sauce) out of pan and pour it in bowl and let it cool.
  • Chatni (sauce) is ready!
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