A new wave of vegetarian cooking!

Toor Daal (Yellow Lentils)

I’m writing this recipe based on requests as it’s one of my favorite lentils and we have it quite often. There are many ways to make toor daal as I will elaborate in my blog. This recipe has a soothing flavor of contentment and not overpowered with extreme taste of the other ingredients. It’s a total amalgamate!


1 cup toor daal – nicely wash once so that the flavor and nutrients do not dissipate

1 medium size white onion – finely chop

4 tbsp cilantro – finely cut

1/2 of soft tofu block (1/2 lb) – optional

~ 4 cups water – may need more (eyeball it)

Fresh Blend:

2 tbsp – 1 piece of ginger, small piece of fresh turmeric, 1 garlic clove, 1 Thai green chile – coarsely chop and finely blend in food processor


1 tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp butter

1 tsp cumin seeds

1/4 tsp asafoetida (hing)

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1/4 tsp red chile powder (deggi mirch)

1  1/2 tsp salt or to taste

1/2 large lemon juice


In a pot (~ 3 QT/3 L) add lentils, water and turmeric. Bring it first to boil on high, then reduce to medium low as it does tend to overflow.

Cook with the lid halfway covered for 20 min. Cooking in the pressure cooker is quicker, but do not over cook to make a mushy consistency.

Microwave option – microwave uncovered for 20 min in a big glass bowl so that it does not overflow. There is the microwave pressure cooker option also, that I have not yet used.

In a small sauce pan temper cumin and asafoetida in oil and butter on medium high.

Then add onions and saute for 5 min before adding the fresh blend.  Adjust heat and add red chile powder and salt. Saute for few min more.

Transfer the seasoning to the simmering toor daal for few min.

Turn off heat – add lemon juice and garnish with cilantro.

Enjoy with rice, rotis, flat bread, etc


Wash the soft tofu and microwave covered for 2 min at intervals.

Can add to the pot directly or to each bowl.

Garnish with spring onions.


Most of my recipes can be vegan by substituting or eliminating few of the ingredients. In this recipe just eliminate butter.


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4 thoughts on “Toor Daal (Yellow Lentils)

  1. My friend’s family eats whole wheat unleavened bread with curried green vegetables (which vary daily), and finish off with curried toor daal and brown rice. Is this what we should be eating more often?

    • Wheat (protein + carbs), green veggies (fiber) and toor daal (protein) is a good balanced meal to have. These are all low in calories, and high in nutrition and therefore, is an excellent way to start the day, and end the day. If you are vegetarian, daal is an essential part of the meal. Try the Toor Daal recipe at home and enjoy!

  2. Made it yesterday. It’s heart healthy and soothing especially for a cold winter night!

  3. Pingback: Toor Daal (ironamma) | Shruti Di Foodi

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