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Tarka Dal

Tarka Dal

Serves pea 4-6 people Clock icon 1 hour (30 mins hands on time)
This classic delicately spiced Indian lentil dish is the king of comfort food. It's super healthy, easy on the purse strings and really very tasty.

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Here's how you do it

  1. Pop lentils in a heavy bottomed pan. Add 500ml water, tinned tomatoes, grated ginger and turmeric. Bring to the boil and simmer for 25 minutes until lentils become soft.
  2. Fry the rest of the spices over a low-medium heat in the oil. Add onion, garlic and red chilli, turn down the heat and cook for 8 minutes until softened.
  3. Tip the spice mix into the dhal and blitz a few times with a blender, not too much or you'll get soup.
  4. Serve in a bowl with a dollop of yoghurt.

Tip: Portion and freeze leftovers for a rainy day.


  • 500g red lentils
  • 2 x 400g tins of tomatoes
  • 3 red chillies
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 50g coriander, roughly chopped

From the larder

  • 2 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp coriander
  • plain oil, for frying

Suitable for

  • Vegetarians
  • Vegans
  • Gluten free
  • Dairy Free