Thursday, October 15, 2009


After eating  health food continuously, I was planning to cook a real healthy food in Badshahi style. A health food  ensures that you will die healthy but a healthy food makes you live healthy. So I thought once in a while I should eat healthy food. But my luck was  else where.
 I got a call from a friend and she wanted to know the recipe of a simple Dal, which she used to eat in her childhood days and liked it very much. Well that was a very difficult specification. How to find out a recipe of a Dal, which one used to eat in her childhood days and doesn't remember the name of the Dal even!!!
After doing a bit of cross examination like a lawyer, I could gather that it was Bengal origin, very thin, looked white with  some nice and very different fragrance and there were few green chili visible. I realized she was talking about a common Dal made from Udad dal ( Kalai and Biuli in Bengali and Biri Dali in Oriya). I gave her the recipe, she cooked and called back to thank me next day.
But by then the damage was done to my healthy food eating ..I also felt like eating this particular  dal ( like getting an  infection) even if I had at least well tried 2 Badshahi Udad dal recipes in my data bank.

 The recipe is very old, well known and  simple , Udad dal ( de-husked, white ones)  boiled with SouNf  and  ginger paste and seasoning of  Sounf , dry red chili added at the end. Green chilis are put too. It has a unique fragrance,  very mild and quite flat, devoid of sourness, high spice and onion garlic influence. Normally needs a BaDa accompaniment , mostly, BaDas made from Khus Khus ( posto, popy seeds) base with coconut, green chili, a binder  etc. It is a thin  dal.
You can try the Badas mentioned in this blog " Mulo Badas and others". If you need a posto Bada recipe let me know or it should be available on the net.
While planning to cook the Dal I suddenly remembered, I had introduced, long back, a little variation ( not my original) to this Dal, which was appreciated by the Guinea pigs ( sorry, I mean the people on whom I had carried out the test of the recipe, 1st time) even my JFs liked it . The variations are minor and given below.
(Oh sorry ! JF means "Jealous Foodies ", to qualify as a JF  one has to be a friend to the other, in other respects except recipes . Like me and my wife are JFs. It improves the over all food development and leads to good food for the JFs too. )
Lets get down to business , I mean cooking .

1. Udad dal 120 gms ( 1 standard cup, 150 ml size), de-husked white ones.
2, SouNf paste 2 tsp ( heap) alternatively use 1 and 1/2 level tsp powder 
3. Ginger paste 2 tsp heap
4. green chili 4 to 8 numbers, hot or mild , you decide
5, Arvi 6 numbers ( saru in oriya, Kochu-r mukhi in bengali..) (Optional not part of traditional dish, but many people add, some people add other vegetables too.
6. salt to taste
7. Sugar 1 tsp to taste (not to sweeten)
For seasoning 
1. fennel (sauNf) seeds 1 tsp slightly heaped
2. Jeera (cumin) 1/2 tsp ( optional , not part of traditional dish, I am trying a fusion from oriya style)
3. dry red chili 2 No
4. Bay leaf :one
5. Ghee (2 tsp for health food, 2 tbsp for healthy food , many tbsp say 3-5 for connoisseurs and JFs). I used 2 tbsp, 
6. Juliens of Ginger 1 tbsp 

1. Roast Udad dal ( variation,) (normally straight raw dal is used) in low flame and when it changes color ( faint brown and few will be brown) remove to a plate for fast cooling. DONT OVER ROAST. You will get that faint aroma of roasted Udad dal....Yumi...
2. When the Dal is cooled, wash thoroughly and soak in water for 2-3 hrs.

Soaked Dal

3. Peel the Arvi and cut into 4 pieces each, lengthwise and wash 2 -3 times.
4. Take a non stick pan or Kadai, add ghee and heat. Add the Arvi , stir fry for 3-5 min or when the sliminess goes and few brown spots arise on pieces. Remove and keep aside. Keep the ghee for seasoning.

5. Take a pressure cooker, add water about 1.5 times the volume of soaked dal, start heating and bring to boil. Add dal, Fennel and ginger paste, salt and sugar and stir fried arvi..
6.  Cook for 5 minutes under pressure. The dal should almost melt away.
7. Cool and open lead.
8. Heat the pan used for stir frying ( the ghee will be there or make up). When hot, give seasoning of SauNf, Jeera, red chili, bay leaf reduce flame, add Juliens of ginger and stir fry for a minute and add to the dal.

(This photo was taken when the bay leaf was blown away under fan)
9. Add green chili,.mix well and bring to boil for a minute and remove from heat. 
10. Add the balance Ghee for the connoisseurs ( optional)

11 Eat with rice and  Bada / Alu bhaja accompaniment.

If you do any experiment with additional spices, vegetables etc please do let me know.

This is a traditional dish. If you dont like it , I am not responsible. I like it. Even the JFs liked it.


Home Cooked Oriya Food said...

Ushnish post... reminds me of the karic masa habisa dalma. I know it is not made with Urad dal, but the color is similar I feel...

prasu said...

totally new to me ......but same as every time, yummy post.........

Nithya said...

This sounds interesting. Sure to try it out soon.

Here for the first time I guess. You have a lovely blog. Keep it going.

Gouri Guha said...

Ushnish, never cooked biuli dal. Looks tempting...will try it out but without the kochu (which I simply hate).
Thanks for sharing this recipe.


Sharmila said...

No holud ... I like it. :-) I do make ths dal in various ways ... just realised never posted any. :-)

Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Sharmila

I just captured a very well used Biuli dal version, particularly in BankDa district, with posto BaDa..
Now I will be waiting eagerly for the other "various ways", (of course at your convenience).
Happy Deepavali


Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Nithya
Many thanks for visiting my space and your nice appreciation.
Will be visiting your site shortly
Happy Deepavali

Nostalgia said...

Good one! I am not sure what Udad dal is but I am going to go find out. Thank you very much for sharing.

Ushnish Ghosh said...

@ Nostalgia
Thanks for visiting my blog. I am delighted.
UDad dal is the white one used in Dosa, Idli. It is Black gram dal, I think it is called Uzhunna parippu in Malaylam and Ulutham parippu in tamil, Not very sure. U got it I am sure.
Happy cooking

sangeeta said...

how did i miss it??
i have heard about this daal but never tasted...will make it for sure...i am a bit apprehensive about adding arbi though..

sangeeta said...

and i think all the food bloggers who interact about food ideas are qualified for being JFs...:)

Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Sangeeta
Drop that stupid Arbi.It is not needed at all. No vegetable is needed in the traditional recipe.

Sayantani said...

Hi Ushnish first of all a very happy diwali to you. I came to know about your page from sharmila's. you have a nice collection of recipes here some of which i consider as my comfort food.
am not very fond of urad daal. maa made us eat this white daal during summer days saying this cools your system. she prepared it with fennel and ginger. your recipe sounds different. hope to try it soon.

Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Sayantani
I am very happy to see you here.I think many of us have gone through this system cooling by Kalai ( Biuli) Dal.
If you didn't like it then don't try it. The minor variation wont change the flavor much. I never liked it as a child, but now I like it if it is cooked once in a while.:-))
See you at your blog soon

Anonymous said...

Interesting and yummy at the same time :) Will surely try this... Have a question.. whenever I roast dal and then cook it, it takes longer to cook and doesn't cook properly I mean not as soft as raw ones.... I have tried moong and channa daal... Am not sure what I do wrong... One difference that I saw was that I never waited for dal to cool down after roasting... Washed it immediately and proceeded with cooking... could that be the reason? Would also like to understand the reason behind roasting dals... Thanks..

Sanjana said...

I really enjoyed reading this recipe- I sounds delicious. I love the taste of fennel in just about anything! I even make cookies and cakes with fennel powder in them- it's such a versitile spice and can be used in just about anything! Great recipe- I'll be visiting you blog often!

Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Sanjana
Thanks for visiting and your appreciations. You can try this Dal, it is very different.
Wherever applicable and possible, I give a Vege option for my non-vege recipes,, so you can look at them too.
Have a nice week ahead