Pakistan, India – Kali Masoor Dal (Black Lentil Gram)

by Usama Tariq


Lentil is a special type of dish and it is part of many cultural cuisines. The lentil is known by its plant called lens culinaris. It is a plant which is seemed like lens-shaped seeds, and it is almost 16 inches tall and is grown in shells. There are many types and verities in lentils which will describe later. Lentils are present in large amounts in the Asian subcontinent. Asian people called it “Daal“. There are two types of lentils split lentils and whole lentils which are further divided into shelled and unshelled seeds. In this article, I tried black lentil gram which is one of the types of shelled lentils. Three main components are using in this dish, one is Black Lentils Gram, the second one is spices and the last one is coconut milk powder. For making black lentil grams the first phase is to boil them well and then prepare a spiced gravy with the help of given spices and then assembled them well. You are done with that. It is very simple and easy to cook and it is very delicious. You should once at your own home if never made earlier. You can make it in a very short time and serve it in front of your homes and loved ones.

Popularity in Pakistan and other Asian countries

As I said that there are a large number of lentils present in Asian countries as compared to European countries. The production of lentils is very fast in Asian countries. In some places, this lentil dish is also known as street food because it is easily available in Pakistani streets and local hotels. This dish is a favorite for many people and easily affordable for Poor people. The benefit of this dish is very cheap in rate as compared to other dishes like chicken dishes, mutton, or beef. This dish is very common the people of Pakistan or India cooked it twice or triple in a week. Most people enjoy this dish with hot boiled rice and some with hot wheat chapati (Tandoor ki roti). In Pakistan people called this black lentil gram as “Masar ki Daal” or Kali Masoor ki Daal. There are different tastes in different places. Some people like the spicy taste and some are likes moderate taste. Also, there are different methods of cooking these Black Lentil Grams. In this recipe, I used coconut milk powder and cream as additional ingredients.

As I said earlier that Lentils have different types and variations. The types and variations are described below:

Types and Variations of Lentils

Brown Lentils

Brown Lentils are the most common types of lentils. In Asian countries, people are likely to buy a bag of lentils and it is partially sure that this bag should be of brown Lentils. It has a mild taste. This type of Lentils holds its shape automatically during cooking.

Green Lentils

Green Lentils are also the most common variety of Lentils. It is very likely with brown lentils. It is also cheap in rate as compared to brown lentils. It also holds its shape during cooking like brown lentils. People eat it mostly with salad and side dishes.

Red and Yellow Lentils

This is also the type of Lentils and slightly differs in shape as compared to green and brown lentils. From the production, it turns o from golden yellow to orange and then red. It is the only one that is split which means that it is produced in smaller bits. It is easy to cook, usually about 20 to 25 minutes after soaking overnight.

History and Origins

Lentils production is the common method of the plantation. The cultivated lentils are derived from the plant lens culinaris and are a type of legume. Lentils are lens-shaped seeds that grow and form small bits of grams. Lentils are a very common food all across the world.

The few things required for the cultivation of Lentils:

  • Soil Requirements
  • Climate Requirements
  • Seedbed Requirements
  • Sowing
  • Cultivation Management
  • Fertilization.

When the completion of fertilization they may be sorted and packed into a package with sorting of colors. The production of red lentils may be a secondary process, in the Indian subcontinent this type of process called itself a “dhal Milling”.

Usage of Lentils

There are many uses of Lentils.

  • Many people used lentils to prepare whole lentil dishes to cook with some spices like yellow lentils gram, black lentil gram, green lentil gram, etc.
  • Some people used lentils to prepare some kind of soups.
  • There is another usage of lentils called khichri. Khichri is the Indian word it is used for a stomach patient.
  • Lentil is also used for making lentil Stocks.
  • Used for making boiled lentils.
  • They are also used for stuffing in all-purpose flour-made puri which is probably used in breakfast.
  • It is also used for a sweet dish like dal halwa (semolina).


In this recipe, the black lentil gram is usually served with hot boiled rice with some salads and min yogurt. Many people used achar as a side dish. Also, many people rate chapati with black lentil gram it gives a divine taste. So, it’s your choice which one is better for you a chapati or boiled rice. I recommend that you should eat chapati with some achaar (sour taste). Serve it in front of your family or friends or guests at Lunch and Dinner it’s your choice.


  •  (Black lentil gram) 1 & ½ cup (soaked for 2 hours)
  • Water 1 liter
  • Cooking oil 3-4 tbs
  •  (Cumin seeds) 1 tsp
  •  (Bay leaf) 1
  •  (Cinnamon stick) 1
  •  (Onion) chopped 1 medium
  • Pureed tomatoes 2-3 large
  • (Ginger garlic paste) 1 tsp
  •  (Salt) 1 tsp or to taste
  •  (Turmeric powder) ½ tsp
  •  (Coriander powder) 1 tsp
  •  (Red chili powder) 1 tsp or to taste
  •  (Cumin powder) 1 tsp
  •  (Black pepper powder) ½ tsp
  • Water 200ml
  • Coconut milk powder 50g Substitute: Coconut milk 1 & ½ Cup
  • Hara dhania (fresh coriander) chopped 1-2 tbs
  • Cream 2-3 tbs
  • (fresh coriander) chopped

Cooking Procedure

Boiling Black Lentil Gram

  • First, take a frying pan place it on the stove at medium flame.
  • Add soaked black lentil gram and 1 liter of water.
  • Let’s bring it to boil for 10 to 15 minutes on high flame.
  • Then mix it well and cover the pan and cook on medium-low flame until the black lentil gram is tender for approximately 20 to 22 minutes.
  • Then uncover it and continue to cook on high flame until the water will be reduced equal to one cup and set it aside for later use.

For Making Spices Gravy

  • Now take a wok add cooking oil and heat it on medium flame.
  • Let’s add some ingredients like cumin seeds, bay leaf, cinnamon stick and mix it well.
  • Now add chopped onion and sauté on medium flame until Translucent.
  • Now add pureed tomatoes into the wok and mix well.
  • Then add ginger garlic paste and mix it well again.
  • Let’s cook it for a minute or twice.
  • After that add salt to taste, turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chili powder to taste, cumin powder, and black pepper powder cook until well mixed or oil separates for approximately 2 to 3 minutes.


  • Now combine both boiled black lentil grams and prepare gravy together.
  • Add boiled black lentils gram into the wok and mix it well.
  • Let’s bring the black lentil gram to boil.
  • For preparing coconut milk powder, take medium size jar add 50g of coconut milk powder into the water, and whisk it well.
  • Then add this prepared coconut milk powder into the wok and mix it well.
  • Let’s cover the wok and cook on low heat for approximately 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Now uncover the wok and remove the bay leaf from the dish and turn the stove off and mash the lentil gram properly.
  • Now turn on the flame and add freshly chopped coriander and again cover it for a minute and cook it on low flame.
  • Cover it again for a simmer cook on low heat for a minute.
  • Your dish is ready for serve.
  • Serve hot with boiled rice in front of your family and guests.
  • Enjoy your meal.

Time Required

  • COOKING TIME: 45 minutes

Nutritional Aspects

  • Calories: 330 kcal
  • Fat: 9g (18%)
  • Proteins: 6 g (19%)
  • Serving: 6 to 8 persons

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