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Dhokar Dalna

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Dhokar Dalna

  • Veg
  • 1 hr 10 mins
  • Serves 5
  • Medium



Dhokar dalna popular Bengali vegetarian dish that will delight any meat eater. Although it takes a few more steps to complete the dish, the comforting and delicious result that awaits is worth the time and effort.

These lightly spiced lentil cakes are fried and simmered in a flavorful gravy made with a ton of different aromatic spices and potatoes. This dish is best enjoyed with plain white rice. Notice that there are no onions or garlic in this dish? There is a little story behind it….see Trivia.

Health Benefits :

Split peas (or otherwise also known as lentils) are very high in protein. For vegetarians, lentils are a very good source of protein. Dhokardalna is also very low in saturated fat with just a little bit of ghee in the recipe. If you want to make this dairy free, feel free to replace that with vegetable oil.

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How to make Dhokar Dalna

  1. Soak the split peas in water overnight.
  2. Drain and transferthe split peas to a blender and make a smooth batter. Add water as needed for smooth blending.
  3. Heat a skillet with oil over low heat and cook the split peas mixture for about 10 to 15 minutes.
  4. Add cumin seeds, ginger, red chilli powder, sugar and salt into the skillet.
  5. Mix them well and cook the mixture for another 2 to 3 minutes over low heat.
  6. Remove the mixture from pan and set it aside to cool.
  7. Grease a large plate and pour the paste onto the plate.
  8. Pat the paste down with hands and make a flat disc.
  9. Cut the paste with knife into small squares, and let them get cool and hard.
  10. Heat some oil in the pan again and pan fry the lentil pieces for 4 to 5 minutes until they are golden brown. Remove and set them aside on a plate lined with kitchen towels to absorb any excess oil.
  11. Heat a small amount of oil in the same skillet and add cumin seeds, asafoetida, bay leaf, and sauté them for few seconds until fragrant.
  12. Add ginger, red chilli powder and potatoes, and pour little amount of water to make a gravy.
  13. Mix well and cook covered for 5 to 8 minutes.
  14. Add fried lentil cakes in the gravy and cook for another 5 minutes.
  15. Add garam masala and ghee at the very last and serve the DhokarDalna hot. 

Trivia : 

In Bengal, it is not uncommon to see widows refraining from onions and garlic and since they are the key contributors to Bengali vegetarian cuisine, the result is a dish such as the dhokardalna!

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