Spinach/Amaranthus Dal – Spinach Lentil Soup

Every Indian family has their own versions of dal. Dal is lentils in Hindi and most north Indian languages. In Tamil it is called paruppu, in Malayalam it is called parippu, in Kannada it is belesaaru and in Telugu, it is called pappu. Every region has their versions of dal too. Also, different dal recipes call for different lentils. Some of the common ones are tur dal (which is also used in sambar), arhar dal, masoor dal, moong dal, etc. In this dal, I used tur dal (because I had leftover cooked dal in the fridge). I also use moong dal sometimes. I used amaranthus, but I also use spinach or any other greens I may have. It is always fun to go to the local market and see the varieties of greens that they have. I usually go and pick up what I fancy that day.

It is also high in vitamins and minerals and along with the dal which is high in proteins. This dish is packed with vitamins, protein, and fiber. This goes well with rice, roti (bread) or just as a bowl of soup.


1 tsp oil

1 cup chopped onions

1 cup chopped tomatoes

4 cloves garlic chopped

1 inch ginger chopped

2 green chillies chopped (you could add more or less depending on the spice you would like)

1 cup chopped greens (I used amaranthus – Dantinsoppu in Kannada and thandukeerai in Tamil)

1 cup cooked dal (tur or moong) – I usually cook the dal in a pressure cooker

1 tsp cumin powder

1/4 tsp turmeric powder

salt to taste

coriander leaves 2 tsp (optional)

To temper

1 tsp oil (or ghee)

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 pinch asafoetida


Heat a tsp of oil in a pan. When hot, add onions and fry till golden.

Add garlic, ginger, and chillies and fry for about a minute.

Add greens and stir fry till the greens are cooked. Season with salt.

(I tasted at this stage and it was so good, that I kept aside a little just to eat as a side)

Add cooked dal, salt, turmeric powder, and cumin powder and cook for 5-10 minutes on a low flame. If it is too thick, add some water and salt to taste.

Heat oil or ghee, when hot add cumin seeds and asafoetida. When cumin starts to brown, add it to the dal and serve. You could add some chopped coriander leaves on top.





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