Shahi Urad Dal is a rich, creamy split urad lentil recipe. Shahi Dal, as the name advocates, is an aromatic, and delicious Mughlai style urad dal cooked with milk, ghee, and a fistful of almonds. Serve urad dal with naan, lachha paratha, or jeera rice for an indulgent Indian style dinner.
Shahi Urad Dal Recipe finds its origins in Mughlai cuisine, characterized by the usage of rich dry fruits, aromatics, and fat to create some exquisitely sinful but tantalizingly delicious gravies.
If you are fond of these rich Mughlai dishes and want to try something vegetarian and wholesome, then bookmark this urad dal recipe!
It is a kind of dal recipe that is befitting for the royal dinner parties or the special occasion in the family.
Urad Dal Recipe…
Preparing Dal: Split black lentils (chilka urad dal) are soaked overnight. The next morning, the soaked lentils are scrubbed between fingers to remove the dark outer covering from the dal. The same dal can be used to make pahadi bada or khichdi.
Then the trusty Indian pressure cooker takes its place over the gas stove, in which the lentils along with other dairy accompaniments are slow-cooked.
The trick to letting any dal cook perfectly is to let steam escape naturally on its own, before opening the pressure cooker. Use the back of a spoon to mash the dal for that thick, saucy consistency.
Preparing Tempering (Tadka): The tadka for the urad dal is prepared while the pressure cooker simmers away, by letting onions and tomatoes sweat it out in a pan. Then, the tadka and dal come together in one sizzling, bubbling plat du jour called Shahi Dal.
You can use coconut oil or the butter for tempering the dal, but ghee takes this urad dal to the next level. A lot of dairy, pure ghee and nuts are added to this dish to get that super creamy, thick and indulgent texture.
Do you need to soak urad dal?
Whole urad dal or the split urad dal needs to be soaked for at least 4 – 5 hours in water. Urad dal takes a longer time to get cooked even in a pressure cooker. Hence, soaking helps in reducing the cooking time. In the case of split urad dal, soaking softens the husk, and it can be easily removed by gently rubbing the grains in between fingers.
What is the difference between sabut urad, dhuli urad and chilka urad dal?
Whole urad dal or the sabut urad is also known as black urad dal. The husk is attached to the grain and this is the dal used for making famous Dal Makhani. The split urad or the chilka urad is black and white in color. It has a removable husk attached to the grain. After soaking the lentil this husk is easily removable. The white urad or the dhuli urad is pale white in color and has no husk attached to the grain.
How to make vegan urad dal?
This Shahi Urad Dal Recipe can be easily transformed into a vegan deliciousness. All you need to substitute two ingredients in the recipe:
- Ghee: Use either coconut oil, vegan butter or any other cooking oil for tempering
- Milk: Use almond milk or cashew milk
More Indian Dal Recipes For You:
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Shahi Urad Dal Recipe
Ingredients For Cooking Dal:
- 1 Cup chilka urad dal (split black lentils)
- ¼ Cup ripe tomato, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ginger-garlic paste
- ½ Cup milk
- 1 teaspoom turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 – 2 green chili, fine chopped
- salt to taste
- 1 bay leaf (tej patta)
- 2 green cardamom (hari elaichi)
Ingredients For Tempering (tadka):
- 2 tablespoon ghee (clarified butter)
- 1 teaspoon jeera (cumin seeds)
- 1 cup onion, fine chopped
- 1 tablespoon sliced almonds (badam)
- 1 teaspoon Garam Masala ( see recipe here)
How To Cook Urad Dal:
- To make Shahi Dal, first clean, wash and soak the urad dal in enough water for 4 – 5 hours or overnight.
- Next morning you will notice the black husk of dal starts leaving the white skin underneath. Rub the dal in small batches in between your palms to remove the black peel. Rinse again and you will end up with majorly white skinned dal with few black peel here and there.
- Combine the dal, cardamom pods, bay leaf, chopped tomato, ginger – garlic paste, green chilli, milk, salt, red chili powder, turmeric powder, and 2 cups of water in a pressure cooker. Mix well to combine.
- Pressure cook for 3 whistles over low heat or till urad dal gets cooked. Make sure urad dal does not get over cooked and turn mushy. Allow the steam of pressure cooker to escape naturally before opening the lid.
- Gently whisk the dal with the spoon to thicken it.
How To Prepare Tempering:
- Heat ghee in a deep pan and add the sliced almonds. Fry them till light golden. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Add the cumin seeds. When the seeds crackle, add the onions, and sauté on a medium flame till onion turns light brown in color.
- Once the oil starts separating from the masala, add the whisked dal, garam masala and stir to combine.
- Taste the dal and adjust the salt accordingly. Let the dal simmer over low heat for few minutes. Turn off the heat.
- Garnish Shahi Urad Dal with fried almond slices and fresh coriander leaves.
- Serve Shahi Urad Dal warm with jeera rice or chapati.
- You can make this dal in an electric pressure cooker, multi-pot, or instant pot. In electric pressure cooker, it takes 15 minutes to cook fully.
- Urad dal or the split urad dal needs to be soaked for at least 4 – 5 hours in water. This reduces the cooking time.