Dhaba Style Dal Tadka – 1

Dhaba Style Dal Tadka
Dhaba Style Dal Tadka

I have realised that there are as many Dhaba Style Dal Tadka recipes as there are dhabas. 😀 😀

Dal Tadka with hot steaming rice, ghee and some papad on the side is one of my most favourite combinations. This is one of the few times I really don’t need any pickles or achar. I have long been on a search for the recipe of a good Dal Tadka. I tried many and each was great in its own way.

Today I writing about the Dal Tadka Recipe I tried from CookingShooking.in.

Dhabas are typically roadside eateries found along national highways. They serve the most finger-licking good and hearty food; the kinds that would fill the bellies of hardworking labourers and truckers.

Of course they are very popular with travellers and tourists. Now-a-days it is not uncommon to find dhaba themed restaurants in cities or their outskirts.

The North Indian dhaba has several staples: Paneer Bhurji, Alu Gobi, Anda Bhurji…. The list is endless.

One of my favourites is Dal Tadka and that is what I have tried to recreate with this recipe.

How to Make Dhaba Style Dal Tadka

Serves: 4

Soaking Time: 60 Minutes

Cooking Time: 45 Minutes


  1. Dhuli Moong Dal – 2 tbsp
  2. Chilkewali Moong Dal – 2 tbsp
  3. Tuvar Dal – 2 tbsp
  4. Chana Dal – 2 tbsp
  5. Urad Dal – 1 tsp
  6. Onions – 2 Large
  7. Tomatoes – 2 Large
  8. Grated Ginger – 3/4 tsp
  9. Garlic Paste – 1 tsp
  10. Green Chili – 2
  11. Dried Red Chillies – 2 or 3
  12. Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
  13. Green Cardamom – 2
  14. Spicy Red Chilli Powder – 3/4 tsp
  15. Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder – 1/2 tsp
  16. Coriander Powder – 1 tsp
  17. Cumin Powder – 1/2 tsp
  18. Amchur or Dry Mango Powder – 3/4 tsp
  19. Kasoori Methi – 1 tsp
  20. Turmeric – 1/2 tsp
  21. Asafoetida – 2 Large Pinches
  22. Bay Leaf – 1
  23. Fresh Coriander – Handful
  24. Ghee – 2 tsp (use Oil for the vegan version)
  25. Salt – To Taste
Dal Tadka - Dhaba Style
Dhaba Style Dal Tadka

Method to Make Dhaba Style Dal Tadka

  1. Preparing the Dal
    1. Wash all the dals well and then soak them in 1.5 Cup of water for at least 1 hour.
    2. Pressure cook the dal for 4 to 6 whistles.
    3. Let the pressure cooker cool completely.
    4. Mash the dal completely.
    5. Add salt and turmeric.
    6. Mix well.
    7. Set aside.
  2. Other Preparations:
    1. Peel and chop the onions to fine pieces.
    2. Chop the tomatoes to very fine pieces.
    3. Pound the green chillies to a coarse paste.
  3. To Make Dal Tadka:
    1. In a heavy bottomed vessel, heat 2 tbsp of ghee.
    2. Add the cumin seeds and stir-fry till they change colour.
    3. Add the bay leaf, dried red chillies and asafoetida.
    4. Stir-fry for 10 seconds.
    5. Add green cardamom.
    6. Stir-fry for 10 seconds.
    7. Add the onion pieces and 2 pinches of salt.
    8. Stir-fry till the onion is light brown.
    9. Add the ginger, garlic, and green chilli pastes.
    10. Stir-fry for 10-20 seconds till the raw smell disappears.
    11. Add the kasoori methi.
    12. Stir-fry for 10 seconds.
    13. Add the tomato pieces.
    14. Stir-fry till the tomato pieces are stewed and the ghee starts to leave the sides.
    15. Add cumin powder, coriander powder, kashmiri red chili powder, spicy red chilly powder, and amchur.
    16. Mix well and stir-fry for 10-20 seconds.
    17. Add the mashed dal and mix well.
    18. Add about 1/3 to 1/2 cup water. The dal should be thick.
    19. Simmer for 5 to 7 mins.
    20. Turn off the heat.
  4. Garnish with chopped coriander.
  5. Serve hot with rotis or rice.
Dhaba Style Dal Tadka
Dhaba Style Dal Tadka



I would love to hear your thoughts and suggestions. Do leave me a comment.