Palak / Spinach tomato daal / Palakura pappu

Food is one of few things in life that trigger powerful feelings. Nostalgia of times spent with people you love, memories of places, tastes and smells that transport you back in time. Daal is one such food for me. I have this memory of my childhood at my grandma’s place where she used to feed me daal and rice for lunch and dinner every day. She definitely makes a point to remind me of that fact 🙂 . I am not the only one in my family who is an admirer of daal, my sister also enjoys it. I have, on more than one occasion watched her enjoy a good meal consisting of nothing but rice, daal and cut mango pickle that mom has sent from India. “ I made daal exactly the way my mom makes “ that was the biggest compliment I could ever get, and it made my day when I heard that my sister said this about my cooking. I have learnt making daal from my mom. She taught me the basics of cooking daal. Today I’m making my mom’s version of spinach tomato daal, exactly the way my sister likes 🙂 so sushma this is for you.

Classic south Indian spinach tomato daal made with yellow lentils, palak and tomatoes. Served with rice or roti as a yummy entree dish.

Ingredients :

Daal

  • 1 cup Pigeon pea / Kandi pappu / Toor Daal
  • 3 cups Spinach / Palak leaves
  • 1 ½ cup Water
  • 2 ripe Tomatoes (medium size)
  • 3-5 Garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp Tamarind
  • 1 tbsp Red chili powder
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  • Salt for taste

Tempering

  • 2 tbsp Coconut oil
  • 1 Garlic clove (chopped)
  • ½ tbsp Bengal gram / Senaga pappu
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds / Aavalu
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds / Jeera
  • 1 sprig of curry leaves

Serving size  5

Cook time 22 min

Prep time 10 min

Passive time 10 min

Instructions :

  • I used a 5 liters pressure cooker for this recipe but if you have time to soak the lentils overnight, the daal can be made using a regular deep pot as well.

Classic south Indian spinach tomato daal made with yellow lentils, palak and tomatoes. Served with rice or roti as a yummy entree dish.

  • Add washed lentils, cubed tomatoes, 4 garlic cloves, tamarind, water, turmeric powder, red chili powder, roughly chopped spinach leaves ( I used baby spinach so I did not have to chop them up) and mix well.

Classic south Indian spinach tomato daal made with yellow lentils, palak and tomatoes. Served with rice or roti as a yummy entree dish.

  • Cook on high heat for 15-20 min i.e., 3-4 whistles for a pressure cooker.
  • Lower the flame and cook for 2 more min. Set it aside to cool down or you can quickly run the cooker with the lid on, under cold water to remove the pressure 😉 like I did.

Classic south Indian spinach tomato daal made with yellow lentils, palak and tomatoes. Served with rice or roti as a yummy entree dish.

  • Add salt and mash the daal for a smooth consistency, I used a potato masher in my kitchen 🙂 and it works like a charm.
  • For the tempering, add some oil to a small pan, 2 min later add Bengal gram wait for few seconds and add chopped clove of garlic, once they turn slightly brown, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves. Give it a minute and add the tempering to the cooked daal.

Classic south Indian spinach tomato daal made with yellow lentils, palak and tomatoes. Served with rice or roti as a yummy entree dish.

Classic south Indian spinach tomato daal made with yellow lentils, palak and tomatoes. Served with rice or roti as a yummy entree dish.

And there you go, the daal is ready to be served. You can have this with rice or roti with a side of lemon or pickle and papad.

Classic south Indian spinach tomato daal made with yellow lentils, palak and tomatoes. Served with rice or roti as a yummy entree dish.

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