Dalma Recipe is a traditional and healthy dish from the Indian state of Odisha. Dalma is a combination of mixed vegetables and lentils tempered with panch phoran masala and garnished with coconut and coriander leaves.
About the Odia Dalma Recipe
Dalma is one of the most comfort and staple food of Odiya people.
I prepared Dalma using a pressure cooker because a pressure cooker makes it very easy and quick to make.
An interesting fact about this recipe is that if you happen to visit Orissa and have Dalma there in five houses, you will find the taste difference in Dalma in all those five houses.
The important part of seasoning is using roasted cumin and dry chili powder. So even if you don’t want to use other spices mentioned under the roasted powder category, just use roasted cumin and roasted dry red chili powder.
Dalma recipe may sound like Sambar but don’t get confused. Dalma does not contain tamarind and is thick in consistency compared to sambhar.
With the combination of lentils and vegetables, the Odia Dalma recipe is undoubtedly packed with proteins, vitamins, and minerals making it a very healthy dish.
This curry from Odisha is a part of Chappan Bhog served in Puri Jagannath Temple. In Jagannath temple, Dalma is made in earthen vessels using the authentic recipe.
By the way have you heard the story of Jagannanth Temple???
There are usually, many stories related to temples and holy places.
One such story that I am going to tell you today is related to Puri Jagannath Temple.
Have you ever wondered, why is it that the Idol of Jagannath in the Puri temple, is still unfinished and what is the story behind this unfinished Idol?
Just like you, I also had this question in mind until I heard this story.
According to this story, once Lord Krishna came in the dream of King Indradyumna, a great devotee of Lord Vishnu and ordered him to make the Idol of Shri Krishna from the trunk of a tree lying on the banks of the river.
King Indradhyumna started searching for a skilled carpenter in order to make the Idol of Shree Krishna.
He called upon many carpenters, but none of them succeeded in making an idol of Krishna.
Finally, Lord Vishwakarma himself came in the form of an old brahmin carpenter in front of the King and expressed his desire of making an idol of Lord Sri Krishna, but then he kept a few conditions in front of the King.
He said he would make that Idol in 21 days, and make it in a closed room alone. Until the work is completed, nobody should open the door.
If somebody opens the door, he would leave the work and go away.
So the King agreed with all his conditions and the carpenter started making the Idol.
After 7 -8 days had passed, the sounds coming from the room suddenly stopped. Hence the King started worrying about the Old man.
And he opened the door.
As soon as he opened the door the old man disappeared and he found the incomplete idol with no hands and legs.
And then the King realized that the Sculptor was none other then Vishwakarma the architect of God.
The King was shocked because the idols had no arms and legs and began to regret why he opened the door.
At that time, Narada came as a Brahmin and said to the King, that the Lord himself wanted to appear in this form, and the thought of opening the door was put by Shri Krishna himself into the mind of King.
That is why he should not worry because it was all decided by Lord Krishna himself.
And this is why the Idol of Jagannath is in an incomplete form.
I hope you found this story an interesting one.
There is an even more interesting story about the Idols at the Jagannath temple in Puri, which I will tell you in my next post. So stay tuned!!!
Basic Ingredients used for Odia Dalma Recipe
Toor Dal: Dalma is generally made from toor dal (arhar dal or pigeon pea lentils). But if you want you can make with chanadal or a mix of both.
Vegetables: You can use any vegetables, you get your hands on. The more the vegetables you add, the dalma becomes wholesome and delicious.
Spice Mix: Spice Mix brings a distinct flavor to the dish. Make this spice powder at home by following easy steps mention below. This spice powder can be stored for a long time in glass jar. You can always make a good quantity to save your time.
Panch Phoran: Panch phoran also known as Panchaw phutana is a blend of five spices that is widely used in Odia cuisine. It contains mustard, cumin, fenugreek, aniseed, and kalonji(onion seeds). Panch Phoran is a must for this recipe.
So let’s get onto the recipe now…
Odia Dalma Recipe
- 1 cup Toor Dal washed and soaked
- 1/2 cup Raw Banana peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup Raw Papaya peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup Pointed Gourd cleaned and diced
- 1/2 cup Potato peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup Pumpkin peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup Yam peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup Beans cut into 2-inch size
- 1/2 cup Raddish peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup Brinjal diced
- 1/2 cup Carrot diced
- 1 Tomato small, chopped
- 3/4 cup Grated Coconut
- 1 no Bay Leaf
- 1 tsp Turmeric
- 1 tsp Sugar optional
- Salt to taste
To make Powder
- 1/2 tbsp Coriander Seeds
- 1 tbsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- 1/2 tsp Fenugreek Seeds optional
- 5-6 nos Dry Red Chilli
- 3-4 nos Cloves
- 1 inch Cinnamon Stick
- 1 no Black Cardamom
- 1 tsp Panch Phoran
- 1 Dry Red Chilli
- 2 tsp Ginger grated or crushed
- Asafoetida a pinch
- 2 tbsp Ghee
- Coriander Leaves a handful, finely chopped
- Dry roast coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black pepper, fenugreek seeds, dry red chili, cloves, cinnamon stick, and black cardamom.
- Now grind them in a grinder jar to a coarse powder.
- Clean and soak dal for 30 minutes.
- Clean, wash and cut vegetables.
- Now in a pressure cooker add soaked dal, all the vegetables along with turmeric powder, bay leaf, and salt. (If you want you can add a tsp of sugar)
- Add water as needed and cook in a pressure cooker on a medium fire.
- Open the pressure cooker once all the pressure has been released. The dal should be well cooked but veggies should not be mushy and should hold their shape. Add up to 1 cup of water if you feel the dal is dry or thick.
- Add the roasted powder and let it boil.
- Now add grated coconut and mix.
- Now heat ghee in a pan, add hing followed by panch phoran, dry red chilli and allow the spices to sizzle in ghee for few seconds.
- Now add ginger and fry for few seconds.
- Now add this tempering to the cooked lentils and vegetables and simmer it for a couple of minutes.
- Garnish with some chopped coriander leaves.
- Serve the delicious Dalma with steamed rice topped with a dollop of ghee.
The more the vegetables you add, the dalma becomes wholesome and delicious. But if you do not find all the vegetables, you can still make dalma with whatever vegetables you have.
Do not skip the roasted powder seasoning as it adds a good flavor to this recipe.
Frequently Asked Questions about Odia Dalma Recipe
Can we use Moong dal or Chana Dal for Dalma?
Yes Absolutely, if you want you can also make with chana dal or, a mix of both.
Can we skip Panchphoran & use just cumin seeds or mustard seeds for tempering?
Panch phoran is a must for this recipe to get the original taste of Dalma. It can be made easily with just five items in your kitchen. You can check the recipe here for Panch Phoran.
Is Dalma and Sambhar same?
People tend to get confuse with Dalma and Sambhar. But they are two different recipes. Dalma does not contain tamarind and is thick in consistency compared to sambhar.
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