At Indian restaurants dal tadka or dal fry is a commonly ordered lentil. Simple yet loaded with flavor this dal is delicious and a staple part of Indian day-to day meal. Yellow Moong Dal is boiled and cooked with onion, tomatoes and aromatic spices that adds a very nice texture and bite to it after being cooked. Dried Fenugreek leaves give this dish a unique flavor and end result is a very tasty Indian Smoked Dal Tadka.
During my childhood travel between Jaipur- Delhi highway I loved to eat at dha-bas along the roadside that serve this dal tadka. Their dal has a mild smoky flavor that I am going to share this method today with step by step process of the dhungar method (read more about dhungar method). Dhungar method means smoking a dish with hot charcoal and is also referred to as coal smoking cooking technique. Hot charcoal in a heatproof bowl is drizzled with ghee and placed on top of cooked dal, and the lid is closed. Let the dal absorb all the smoky flavor.
Usually dal is cooked in the listed time but after opening the cooker you find chana dal is still half cooked then babysit the lentils and cook them longer till they are soft and tender, if needed keep adding water to get a nice smooth consistency.
I have kept the flavors on a mild side but very adaptive recipe – adjust seasonings along the way. Add ginger-garlic to bring out more flavor. Enjoy this dal with warm rotis and white rice.