Dal tadka or Tadka Dal is one of the most basic yet one of the most popular dal recipes served in any Indian Restaurant.
Learn to make Restaurant Style Tadka Dal or Dal Tadka with step-by-step video guide.
A plain dal is a staple more or less at every meal in an Indian household. Can you imagine a simple lentil could be cooked in so many different ways?
Every Indian state has its own traditionally famous dal recipes which are made using different varieties of lentils. The most common everyday dals and popular dal recipes are:
There is a particular variety of dal from Northern Part of India. It is called Restaurant style Tadka Dal which is made with split pigeon pea and split chickpeas. This humble dal can turn any meal into a Festive meal.
Every single Indian restaurant elegances their menu with this dal tadka. This dal tadka is predominantly served along with dal makhani. No wonder this is a must-have delicacies when dining at restaurants.
What is Tadka Dal or Dal Tadka?
Basically, this tadka dal is a specialty of North Indian cuisine. You get them at roadside eateries called dhabas, and restaurants as well. This dal is a creamy concoction of two lentils boiled until they are rich and creamy, and then tempered twice with brilliant spices and butter/ghee.
Primarily, in dal tadka recipe, 2 types of lentils are boiled along with some tomatoes, salt, turmeric, and ginger. Later they are tempered twice with ghee/oil.
How to make Tadka Dal?
Dal tadka is loved by everyone and recreating this dish at home is fairly simple. Dal is a staple dish in India. Thus we simply don’t go to restaurants every other day just to eat dal tadka.
This dal is amazingly delightful in its plainness. But we certainly do love the taste of dal tadka which we get in restaurants, and luckily it doesn’t require so many fancy ingredients. The magic lies in the double tadka process.
This can painlessly prepared with a basic list of ingredients which you can easily get at any regular grocery store.
For making Tadka Dal you first boil the dals. Then the boiled dal is added to tadka.
For the first (tadka) tempering, onion, tomatoes, garlic, and ginger are sauteed along with chili powder and other spices. Then the boiled dal gets cooked with the spices.
When the dal is cooked, then second tempering is added to dal. This addition makes it more appealing, aromatically rich and classic. It is so good! And oh so creamy. And should be served immediately after second tadka.
So the next time you have a dinner party at home, you can make this undemanding dal tadka to just wow your guests. I can assure you that your home would smell like a beautiful Indian restaurant. Just don’t forget to light some candles for that extra romantic charm. 😉
There are many Restaurant and Dhaba style recipes posted on this website such as:
- Dhaba Style Dry Aloo Gobi Sabji
- Dhaba Style Malai Kofta
- Restaurant Style Dal Makhani
- Restaurant Style Indian Garlic Naan
- Restaurant Style Matar Paneer Curry
- Restaurant Style Paneer Butter Masala
- Restaurant Style Paneer Do Pyaza
- Restaurant Style Shahi Kaju Curry
Tadka (तड़का) / Chaunk (छौंक) / Bagar (बगार) are the Hindi words for tempering. In this tempering process, whole spices and herbs are sauteed in ghee/oil. Thus the oil changes the color and turns aromatic. It makes any simple dish dreamy when it’s added to the dish.
This Restaurant style Tadka Dal Recipe is a north Indian style Dal recipe. This particular dal is made with the combination of Toor dal /Arhar Dal (aka split pigeon pea) and chana dal (aka split chickpeas).
Restaurant Style Dal Tadka Recipe (Step-by-step photo instructions)
How To Cook Dal:
- Rinse both the dals well.
- In a pressure cooker add the rinsed dal, turmeric powder, salt, tomatoes, chopped ginger, chopped onions, and water.
- Cover with lid and pressure cook for 4 whistles. Allow the steam to escape before opening the lid.
- Once cooled, open the lid and whisk dal. Keep it aside.
How To Make First Tadka (Tempering) For Dal:
- Heat ghee in a pan. Once hot, add cumin seeds and let them sizzle.
- Now add the ginger, garlic and sauté for a minute.
- Add onions and saute until the onions are golden brown.
- Next, add a pinch of asafetida, chopped green chilies, and sauté for a minute.
- After that, add chopped tomatoes and let it cook for 3-4 minutes.
- Now add 1/2 cup of water and let it boil for another 2 minutes.
- Add red chili powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder, kasuri methi, coriander leaves, and salt.
- Mix well and let it cook for 3 minutes. Now transfer the pressure cooked dal into the pan with tadka masala and mix properly. You can add more water if needed.
- Let it come to a boil and turn off the heat.
How To Make Second Tadka (Tempering) For Dal:
- In a tadka pan heat 2 tablespoon ghee.
- Now, add a pinch of asafetida, cumin seeds, chopped garlic, chopped onions and sauté for a minute.
- Next, add dried red chilies, bay leaf, cloves, and sauté for another minute.
- Add red chili powder and cook for a few seconds.
- Now pour the hot tadka over hot dal.
- Mix thoroughly and serve hot with rice, paratha or roti.