Guyanese Dhal [video]
I love my blog! I love the fact that it pushes me to try new recipes in an effort to share them with you. Lately I’ve been having alot of failures I must admit, but I keep trying. I revisited old favorites, recipes I haven’t cooked in a long time and the results weren’t always great. Today I revisit Dhal. Originating in India, dhal is a soup made with the yellow dhal/yellow split peas and seasoned with warm spices such as curry, tumeric and cumin. To finish it off you “chunkay” garlic, which is a process where you brown the garlic in oil to bring out a slightly burnt flavor and you add the hot oil and garlic to the dhal. Soup? Sauce? Dip? We Guyanese can admit that dhal fits into every category. There is no right way to eat it. I’ve had it in a mug by itself as a soup, used it as a dip for my roti or poured it over my rice to use as gravy. You can’t go wrong, either way its very delicious. A classic way of pairing Dhal is rice with sauteed saltfish and baigan choka or Aloo with coconut milk on the side….seriously authentic, seriously delicious!! As I wrote that last line, I had a vision of myself and my siblings sitting Indian style on the floor and eating this with our hands to much disdain of our mother. But we loved it, it allowed us to mimic a part of our culture that we didn’t practice. How could a child not enjoy eating with their hands?? Especially when our mom forbade us?? Today I will use a spoon, but I will enjoy it just the same and I hope you do.
Get the Recipe Dhal
- 1/2 cup yellow split peas
- 5 cups water
- 1 cup chicken stock or 1 chicken bouillon + 1 cup water
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp curry powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 whole wiri wiri
- 3 cloves garlic
- 3 tbsp vegetable or canola oil
- Soak split peas overnight. Discard water then boil split peas with 4 cups water on a medium fire for 1 hour or until peas are tender.
- Remove from heat and pulse in a blender until smooth. Return to a medium fire and add chicken stock, 1 cup water, cumin, curry powder, pepper and salt. Cook for 10 mins.
- While dhal cooks, in a sautee pan, heat 3 tablespoon oil and add sliced garlic. Fry until dark brown, do not burn or the garlic will add a bitter taste to the Dhal. This process should take no more than 3 mins.
- Add garlic and oil to the Dhal, stir ;cook for an additional 10 mins.
eating rice and dhal while hot with your fingers is a great skill that I had as a child. I get practice at some weddings and now during Ramadan I go sometimes to a village mosque in Guyana where there are no spoons/forks 🙂 I burning my fingers but I managing the rice and dhal!
My dhal is usually vegetarian, but I notice you use chicken stock and I have heard about people throwing in a bone of choice!
To make this completely vegetarian I would simply omit the chicken stock or use vegetable stock in place of it.
This looks like such a nice, simple soup! Thank you for friending us on foodbuzz–I’m looking forward to following your blog 🙂
Just found your blog….you’re awesome!!! you have so many great Guyanese recipes and American ones too definitely bookmarking your blog.
Aww…thanks so much for the kind comment!
This is the best dhal I have ever made. I used veggie instead of chicken stock to make it vegetarian. I’ve never made dhal with stock before.
So glad I came across your blog. I’ve tried a few other recipes over the past few weeks, nice to find a blog like this one!
I made this and a few others today. I must say, your site saved me. I am an American Guyanese. I never learned how to cook Guyanese food so this site really helped me out. I loved the Dhal. I made it today with green split peas because it was what i had in my pantry. It tuned out perfectly. 🙂 Thanks so much!
How much does this yield? It looks great!
Erica, this yields about 4 servings
Looks lovely. My Dad is British Guyanese and he makes Dahl (and other Guyanese dishes) but alas I’ve never been in the kitchen all the time when he does it. You’ve used a few ingredients I know my Dad doesn’t use (stock, curry powder & hot red pepper). I have seen him put oil in a ladle with whole cumin seeds and garlic though and fry over the stove for a bit before adding to the Dahl. Adding the cumin to the garlic would be the only thing that I would change to get the nice toastiness of the cumin. My Dad’s on holiday for a week so I shall be going to town on your Dahl and the Ackee & Saltfish with the Bakes (Floats). I spend ages looking at your website; everything looks so mouthwatering 🙂
You’re the best. You recipies a spot-on and authentic. Thank you for that.
Quick question! When you remove the peas from heat after boiling, did you drain it? Or did you blend it in the same water you boiled it in? Thank you! 🙂
Heba it’s blended with the liquid that it was boiled in.
Pingback: 2017-03-17 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday – surviving the food allergy apocalypse
Love your blog.
Can you please post a recipe for this? I went to the YouTube video which promised a link to the recipe but the link leads to an error.
Hi, I’m sorry, somehow the recipe was removed. I will add it soon.