Tuesday, 21 October 2008


I think this is a favourite dhal with all Punjabis in Malaysia. It is also Mr G’s favourite as he reckons this is the most flavoursome of all the dhals he has eaten. I beg to differ…I like all dhals. I think he likes this version because it is spicier than the rest.

Anyway, this is how I make Mung Dhal. I am sure that the version that is made in India is different from how I make this dish. I guess the Malay culinary influences have seeped into my dhal making too! Also, I prefer to use Chinese Celery as the garnish to this dhal. If you can’t find Chinese celery, you can substitute with coriander leaves. You can find Chinese celery most of the time at LAE Asian Grocer in Southlands Shopping Centre Mawson, Canberra.


1.5 cups mung beans* – soaked overnight in 2 litres of water. This will quicken the cooking process
1 tsp turmeric powder*
1 tsp salt*
1.5 litres of water*
5 to 6 dried chillies* – torn into two (optional)
2 red onions – diced
4 cloves garlic – minced
Thumb size ginger – diced
2 sprig curry leaves
2 tbsp Malaysian made meat curry powder e.g. Baba or Nuri Brand or Ayam Curry Powder
2 spring onions and 1 small bunch Chinese Celery/Fresh Coriander – chopped thickly
Oil or Ghee


Wash the beans and put in a pot with * ingredients. Cook until the beans have split/collapsed. You may need to top up your water during this process. When cooked, turn heat to very low and allow to simmer whilst you prepare the ‘tadka’ or spices.

In a separate pan, heat 2 tbsp oil or ghee and add in the curry leaves, followed by the garlic, ginger and onions. Cook until the onions are golden.

Add in the curry powder and 1 cup water and cook until the oil seeps through. Turn off the heat and pour the ‘tadka’ into the dhal.

Mix well, check the salt and add in the celery/coriander leaves and spring onions. Cook for 1 min, lift and serve hot with rice such as CUMIN AND CARROT RICE or breads such as CHAPATTIS, PURIS or ROTI CANAI.


Retno Prihadana said...

Vg, this recipe is really interesting. I haven´t tried many India ´s Food only curry :)

SweetBites said...

hi vg, nice recipe you've got here.i always make dhal tadka with the yellow lentils. might give ur recipe a try. btw, r u preparing to celebrate Diwali. do u hve like a punjabi community there?

Usha said...

Perfect comfort food...looks delicious :-)

VG said...


You should give it a try. Sedap makan ngan roti atau nasi. Also with sambal belacan and ikan masin (salted fish). Yum yum.

Yes, normally tadka is done with yellow dhal. Try this version - I'm sure you won't be disappointed.

As for Diwali, I am preparing just a few cookies for the kids. It's not a holiday here and most people don't know about Diwali. I think there are about 30 Punjabi families in Canberra. Unfortunately I only know a few.

I do more for christmas/New Year, as we get nearly 10 days off during that period (not that I am a christian) and we have a few friends over for a BBQ on Boxing Day and New Year's Eve.

Usha, thank you for your kind comments.

Anonymous said...

VG, I don't think I have ever had this daal before. Do they serve this at Indian restaurants?

VG said...

Hi anon

Not sure where you are writing from but I have never seen it here in Canberra or in malaysian indian restaurants (unless you can find a north indian restaurant).

This dhal is normally served in Sikh temples too (slightly different version), so if you want to try, you can always go to a sikh temple on Sundays. Anybody can attend sikh temples, providing you cover your head and try not to wear revealing clothes. A sleeved top and jeans, with a head scarf would suffice. Lunch (vegetarian) is normally served between 12 and 1 pm. All are welcome.

Yasmeen said...

I love mung dhal,its so healthy:)

Zue Murphy said...

Vg, you need to put the title of your recipe as the first post. Everyday I see quote of the day and I actually missed looking at your delicious recipe. Bila diwali?

VG said...

Hi Yasmeen

Tks for visiting. Yah, very healthy (as long as you don't use ghee)....I can eat it just as a 'soup' and it is so satisfying! Great comfort food. BTW, love your blog and great recipes.

VG said...

Hi Zue

Thank you for your comments and feedback. I will revise my 'strategy' and put the quote of the day after my recipes.

Diwali is on Tuesday 28 Oct 2008. Unfortunately I have to work so not much happening here apart for some kuih muih for the kids. Wish I back home in Malaysia!

ICook4Fun said...

I never cook mung bean this way. Usually bubur kacang hijau with gula melaka. Does this dish taste like the normal dhal curry?

VG said...

Hi Gert

Ya, this is a spicy version, like the normal dhal curry but made with green lentils. Great eaten with crusty bread, if I may add.