This Lauki Chana Dal is a simple North-Indian-style vegetarian curry. We use Bottle gourd and bengal gram cooked with tomato and spices. Though I have used a pressure cooker it is okay to use a sauce pot or Instant pot. Serve this simple and healthy dal with rice or paratha.
With bottle gourd, you can make both savoury and sweet dishes! Lauki Paratha, Lauki Kheer, Lauki yoghurt curry, Lauki koftas, Lauki Chicken, Louki Gosht, etc. I can proudly say that Lauki is to us what Zucchini is to the west.
Lauki chana dal is a simple humble dal recipe that goes superbly well with roti, onion paratha or a bowl of rice.
- ghee: you can use a mix of butter and oil.
- cumin seeds
- veggies: bottle gourd, ginger, green chillies, red onion, tomatoes and coriander leaves
- ground spices: turmeric, red chilli, garam masala, hing and kasuri methi
- chana dal: wash and soak for at least an hour or overnight to cook quicker and tastier.
How to store lauki?
If you are new to this veggie, you can check my Lauki paratha post where I have shared how to use bottle gourd in cooking.
To store a cut lauki, make sure to cling wrap the cut side and place it in a plastic bag in the fridge. This way, it stays fresh for 4 to 5 days.
To store peeled and cut lauki then keep them submerged in water in a box and keep refrigerated. This will keep them fresh for at least 3 days.
In my mother tongue, this dish would be chorakka in kadala parippu.
How to make it?
The whole process of making lauki chana dal starts and ends in a pressure cooker or instant pot if you will.
Heat ghee or oil in a pressure cooker on medium flame.
Add cumin and let it crackle for a few seconds. This can easily get burnt if the heat is high.
Add the finely chopped ginger
and green chillies and sauté for a couple of minutes.
Add the onions and sauté till they become translucent.
Stir in all the ground spice powders and fry for a few minutes until fragrant.
Add the tomatoes and sauté till the tomatoes soften and the oil start releasing from the onion-tomato masala.
Dump the soaked chana dal...
...the chopped bottle gourd, salt and water and stir.
Cover with the lid and pressure cook for 1 whistle on a high flame reduce the flame to medium and cook for two to three more whistles. Do not open until the pressure releases on its own.
Add the chopped coriander leaves and crushed kasoori methi and a sprinkle of garam masala.
Serve lauki dal hot with any Indian flatbreads or rice.
Chana dal is hindi for split chickpeas or chickpea lentils or bengal gram.
Yes, Dudhi or doodhi, ghiya, churanga, chorakka are same as Lauki or louki. These are some of the Indian names for the vegetable, Bottle Gourd - which by the way, is also called opo squash or calabash or long melon etc. So many different names for this vegetable which is highly nutritious and versatile!
Recipes using Chana Dal
Lauki Chana Dal | Bottle Gourd and Bengal Gram Lentil Curry
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger or 1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
- 3 to 5 green chillies slit
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- 1 pinch asafoetida hing
- 2 medium-sized tomatoes finely chopped
- ½ cup chana dal washed and soaked for at least an hour hour in lukewarm water
- 350 grams chopped bottle gourd approx 2 cups
- 1 cup water for pressure cooking
- Fresh coriander leaves chopped
- 1 teaspoon kasuri methi dried fenugreek leaves, crushed between hands
- salt to taste
- Heat ghee in a pressure cooker on medium flame.2 tablespoons ghee
- Add cumin and let it crackle.1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- Add the ginger and green chillies and sauté for a couple of minutes.1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger, 3 to 5 green chillies
- Add the onions and sauté till they become translucent.1 medium onion
- Add all the ground spice powders and fry for a few minutes until fragrant.½ teaspoon turmeric powder, 1 teaspoon red chilli powder, ½ teaspoon garam masala, 1 pinch asafoetida
- Add the tomatoes and sauté till the tomatoes soften and the oil start releasing from the onion-tomato masala.2 medium-sized tomatoes
- Add the soaked chana dal, the chopped bottle gourd, salt and water and stir.½ cup chana dal, 350 grams chopped bottle gourd, 1 cup water, salt to taste
- Cover with the lid and pressure cook for 1 whistle on a high flame reduce the flame to medium and cook for two to three more whistles. Do not open until the pressure releases on its own.
- Open the lid and check its consistency and bring it to desired consistency by simmering to make it thick or adding more water to make it thin.
- Add the chopped coriander leaves and crushed kasoori methi and a sprinkle of garam masala.Fresh coriander leaves, 1 teaspoon kasuri methi
- Serve lauki dal hot with any Indian flatbreads or rice.