For Pressure Cooking Arhar Dhall


½ cup KKG Kumaran arhar dhall (tuvar dhall or toor dhall or pigeon pea lentils)

½ inch ginger – finely chopped or grated

¼ teaspoon turmeric powder

¼ cup chopped onions

1.5 to 1.75 cups water * check notes below on how to cook the lentils in a pot


Other Ingredients


2 tablespoons butter or ghee or oil – for the tempering

½ to 1 tablespoon butter or ghee to be added later – optional

1 medium tej patta (Indian bay leaf) – optional

2 cloves

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 medium-size tomato – chopped

1 green chili

3 to 4 small to medium-sized garlic cloves – crushed

¼ cup chopped onions

¼ teaspoon turmeric powder

½ teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder or deghi mirch or kashmiri lal mirch powder

¼ teaspoon garam masala powder – optional

1 pinch asafoetida (hing)

½ to 1 teaspoon kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves) – crushed

½ teaspoon amchur powder (dry mango powder) or ¼ teaspoon lemon juice – optional

few chopped coriander leaves for garnishing

salt as required


Cooking Arhar Dhall

  1. Pick and rinse the lentils very well. Add the lentils along with water in the pressure cooker.
  2. Add finely chopped onion, ginger and turmeric powder.
  3. Stir and pressure cook for 8 to 9 whistles till the dhall has become completely cooked and is of consistency which can be mashed easily.
  4. Mash the dhall with a spoon or wired whisk. Keep the cooked dhall aside.
  5. If the dhall appears thick, then add some hot water and keep it aside.

Making Arhar Dhall

  1. Heat oil in another pan. Add the tej patta, cloves, and cumin seeds. First, fry the cumin till browned. Then add the garlic and saute for 10 to 12 seconds.
  2. Add the chopped onion and fry till transparent or light brown. Add the green chilies and saute for some seconds. Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, garam masala powder, and asafoetida.
  3. Stir and then add the tomatoes. Saute till the tomatoes become softened and you see oil leaving the sides of this base onion-tomato masala mixture.
  4. Lastly, add the crushed Kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves) and saute for a few seconds. Pour this tempering in the cooked dhall.
  5. Add 1 tbsp butter or ghee (optional) and salt. You can add some water here if required.
  6. Stir and simmer the arhar dhall for 5 to 6 minutes or more till it reaches a slightly thick consistency. You can even keep the medium consistency of the dhall if you prefer.
  7. If you want a slightly sour taste in the dhall, then add a few drops of lemon juice or ½ tsp of amchur powder (dry mango powder) towards the end. If adding dry mango powder, then stir well and allow the arhar dhall to simmer for 1 to 2 mins after adding it.
  8. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve the arhar dhall hot with steamed basmati rice or jeera rice or naan or rotis accompanied with roasted papad and a pickle or salad by side.


Making arhar dhall in a pot or pan.

  1. Rinse and soak the lentils for an hour. Drain and add them to a pot.
  2. Add 2 cups of water, onion, turmeric, and ginger.
  3. Add a few drops of oil as this reduces the frothing in the lentils.
  4. Stir and cover and cook the lentils.
  5. Bring to a boil and then simmer till the lentils are cooked really well. If too much water has evaporated, then add some more hot water and continue cooking.

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