OK, so I could go into a rant about how Gujarati stereotypes in Bollywood are not portraying us Gujaratis incorrectly. Well but, if I really am a true Gujarati, I am probably going to just sip some Gujju Beer aka some chilled buttermilk, munch on some khakhras (not theplas, see there goes crashing one of the stereotypes) and move on. Keep Calm and Move On. (No, its not, Keep Calm and do Garba) . Anyway, peep into a Gujarati household on a Sunday afternoon and there is a high chance that you could smell a tempering of mustard seeds, curry leaves and hing, wafting and fluttering around a cloud of that fragrance of Daal Dhokli. Daal Dhokli for the uninitiated consists of the trademark mildly sweet, sour, salty and spicy (and not just sweet ) Gujarati daal in which strips of dough are simmered until cooked. Served with rice, it is the perfect antidote to all the stress you have experienced during the week and your passport to a wonderful nap later in the afternoon.
I have this unspoken “no-bowls, no-spoons” rule – Daal Dhokli and Rice with homemade Ghee is one of those meals where we, N and I, have slipped into a subconscious rule to use fingers to gulp it all… Close your eyes, cross your heart and tell me honestly, does the hot ghee on steaming rice feel as silky with spoons as it does with fingers? For me, its just not the same! 😍
Without bothering you with my rant any further I will skip to the recipe.
- 3/4th cup wheat flour,
- 2 tbsp besan/chickpea flour
- 1/4 tsp salt,
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder,
- 1/4 tsp chilli powder,
- 1/4 tsp coriander-cumin powder
- 2 tsp oil,
- about 1/4 cup of water to knead a moderately firm dough,
- Toor Dal – 1/2 cup ( one mid-sized steel katori)
- 1/2 tsp + 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp salt (while pressure cooking) + more, as per taste, added later
- 1 tsp chilli powder (if mildly hot chillies, else reduce to half),
- 1 tsp cumin coriander powder
- 3 tbsp jaggery
- A handful of peanuts
- Juice of half a lemon
- chopped coriander leaves, to garnish
- 3 tbsp of oil
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds,
- 1/2 tsp mustard seeds,
- 1/4 tsp hing
- 4-6 curry leaves
- Pressure cook dal with 1/2 tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of turmeric and 1 1/2 cup of water ( 1:3 ratio of dal and water).
- Meanwhile, knead the dough with all the ingredients under Dhokli, add a little water a time to mix into a moderately firm dough, almost like the parantha dough in texture. Divide into 4 portions.
- Transfer dal into a deep broad vessel. After the dhokli is added and cooked the volume will be about 3 times that of dal so use a large capacity vessel.
- Mash dal to a smooth consistency and then add about 3 cups of water. Add all the peanuts, 1/2 tsp of salt and the spices except for the lemon juice and coriander leaves and bring it to a boil.
- While it is heating up, roll out one portion of dough into a thin circle. Roll it as thin as possible, like a chapati. If it’s too thick, it will take longer to cook and stick to each other into a mush. Cut into diamonds making parallel cuts with a knife at an angle. You may roll out all portions and then cut into pieces or do it one by one, either way is fine.
- Turn the heat to low and drop in the pieces of dhokli one by one. After every 10-15 pieces give the dal a stir so that the pieces don’t stick to each other.
- Once all pieces are added, cook on a low heat for about 10 mins stirring in between.
- Once cooked, the dhokli pieces would swell and look opaque instead of translucent. Finally, check salt and jaggery and adjust if needed.
- Turn off the flame. Heat oil in a small vessel for tempering and add to it everything mentioned under spices. Add the tempering to dal dhokli and top with lime juice and coriander leaves. Mix well.
- Done! Have it all by itself or like I did, with rice, some pickle, a papad or two and a chilled glass of buttermilk! 🙂