Thursday, 22 November 2007

Jihvā for Ingredients - Toor Dal

Toor dal or Thuvaram paruppu is the most popular and widely used lentil in India. This highly digestible South Indian staple has a thick gelatinous, meaty consistency. Toor dal looks very much like Chana dal but it is smaller. It has a mild and nutty flavour. With its skin on, it is greenish-brown in colour and without its skin, it is yellow.

Toor dal is usually sold and cooked skinned and split. Sometimes it is sold with an oily coating, which should be rinsed off before cooking. It takes a little longer to cook than masoor dal. Toor dal is often used in sambar, cooked as a side dish or ground into flour.

Lately, I have been craving for mutton briyani. Finally, found my way to cook it, after such a long time. I thought of cooking sambar to accompany the briyani. While preparing the ingredients, suddenly something struck me. Hey, why don't I cook both the briyani and sambar together as one meal???

Mutton and Toor Dal Briyani

What do we need:

2 cups basmati rice
1/2 kg mutton, cubed
1/4 cup toor dal
1 carrot
1 onion
1" ginger
1 bulb garlic
2 green chillies
2 large tomatoes, chopped
1 bunch mint leaves
1 bunch coriander leaves
1 cup yoghurt
1 cup milk
2 cups water
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp ghee
1 tbsp oil
1 bay leave
1 star anise
4 cloves
a pinch of saffron
2 tbsp cashew nuts, halved
2 tbsp sultanas
2 tbsp fried onion crisps
salt to taste

To grind:
2 tbsp coriander
1 tbsp fennel
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp poppy seed
1 tsp black pepper corns
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp garam masala
1 1/2 inch cinnamon stick
3 cardamoms
3 dried chillies

How do we do it:

Marinade the mutton with half of the yoghurt, turmeric powder and salt. Set aside, preferably overnight in the refrigerator.

Soak the toor dal. Wash and soak the rice. Then, drain the water and set aside.

Soak the saffron strands in the milk. Set aside.

Dry fry the spices to be ground and grind them into powder form.

Thinly slice the onion. Half the chilli lengthwise. Grind the ginger and garlic into paste.

Heat the ghee. Fry the cashew nuts and sultanas. Set aside.

Add oil to the remaining ghee. Fry star anise, bay leaf and cloves. Add ginger and garlic paste. Then, onion and chilli. Sautè until aromatic. Add the chopped tomatoes. When the tomatoes turn pulpy, put in the marinated mutton. Add the ground spices, the remaining yoghurt and lime juice. Cook until the mutton is half cooked. Then, add the soaked toor dal. Cook until the mutton is well cooked. Then, put the rice and milk in. Sprinkle the chopped mint and coriander leaves. Season with salt. Cook until rice is fluffy and does not stick together.

Finally, sprinkle the fried cashew nuts, sultanas and the onion crisps. Serve hot.

This is the end product. It was wonderful. As usual, I cooked the biryani directly in rice cooker. I made sure that the toor dal does not over cook and becomes soggy. It was crunchy and just perfect. I am submitting it to JFI-Toor Dal event.


bee said...

what a wonderful recipe. i love the pic of toor dal.

Prema Sundar said...

A very different recipe with mutton and dal..nic pic

Anonymous said...

biryani looks nice but i will try ur recipe without toor dal;)

sunita said...

Lovely biryani recipe...beautiful colour :-)

Happy cook said...

Love the combination. It looks delicious

Roopa said...

looks delicious :)

Kribha said...

Unusual combination. It's a new recipe to me. Looks yummy and delicious.

Cynthia said...

Puspha, that is such a lovely pic of the dal and the dish, love the colour.

Linda said...

Hi Pushpa, this is such a decadent recipe with all the spices and the special garnishing! Thank you for this wonderful contribution to JFI-Toor Dal! Yours may be the only non-veg yet :)

Seena said...

Would make rice with dal, but not biryani..this is great , Pushpa..

A kitchen scientist & a white rat hubby!!! said...

nice and a new recipie, have never heard of dal biriyani, very innovative, Pushpa...and love the dark hue of the serving, yummy

sabochii said...

wow..looks it an indian,pakistani or bangladeshi dish?

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

A gorgeous dish! Spicy and healthy!



Asha said...

How beautiful! Great entry Pushpa. Looks delicious.Glad I didn't miss this post!:))

sagari said...

biryani looksssssssssss sooo yummyyyyyy

Puspha said...

Thank u very much everybody.

Seema said...

Awesome biryani...looks mouthwatering & tempting, that i want it right now! Lovely picture..

Melissa said...

I've been following your blog for quite a while and enjoying your wealth of good recipes. When Foodista announced that they are going to publish the best food blogs in a full color book that will be published by Andrews McMeel Publishing Fall 2010, I naturally thought of you. This recipe would be a good submission! You can enter here:

Editor and Community Developer -- The Cooking Encyclopedia Everyone Can Edit

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