Chana Dal Lauki is typically an Indian main course item. So whether it is lunch or dinner चना दाल वाली लौकी की सब्जी is always on the menu. Now there are a couple of reasons why it’s this way.
Let’s me point them out for you.
- It’s quick & time-saving.
- Ingredients are readily available.
- You can make it even if there are fewer ingredients.
- Chana dal & bottle gourd combo is affordable.
- There are no complex procedures & steps.
- A fuss-free recipe to make at home. Also, this is comfort food.
- It makes an excellent filling recipe, making a good tiffin box dish.
- Both the chana dal and lauki bring a set of health benefits for you.
- It goes well with both rice and roti.
- You can also eliminate the garlic, and it will still taste great.
- This dish will be loved by even the picky eater, especially the ones who don’t like eating lauki.
Given these points, an amateur can even make this dish. Before we begin making it let’s get into some quick details.
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What is Chana Dal Lauki?
Chana dal & lauki are Hindi terms here. Chana dal is split chickpeas & lauki means bottle gourd, one vegetable and a lentil.
The origin of this recipe lies in the Indian villages. The reason is sustainability. With this intention, this particular dish penetrated the urban lifestyle—for example, in small-town restaurants & roadside eateries.
To cook mouth-watering food, we need to do things differently. For example, dal palak. This traditional North Indian dish requires double tempering—one with cooking oil & the other with ghee. The plain and simple reason is the flavouring. Double tadka adds another layer of flavours to the dish.
What’s the point? The point here is to cook this main course item differently. Therefore, the bifurcation of things will be likewise. Refer to the list below.
Now that we know what chana dal lauki is let’s consider making it.
- Chana dal is high in fibre. That helps in digestion problems.
- Chana dal also provides you with enough energy. Moreover, it is one of the sources of protein for vegetarians.
- The spices in the dish, especially turmeric, are anti-inflammatory, thus keeping your heart healthy.
- This vegetable regulates blood sugar. Hence, it is perfect for people with diabetes.
- Lauki also maintains a cholesterol level.
Both the main ingredients are highly nutritious for you. Therefore, everyone should consider making this dish at least once in a while.
Two ways to make Chana Dal Lauki
If I want to convey my love for this recipe, it will be – Damn Easy-Peasy!
There are two methods of boiling your vegetable (lauki) & lentil (chana dal). First is the routine method. Here you add water, salt, vegetable, and lentils & boil till soft.
The second one is integrating all the spices & masala powders and then boiling. I guess this method is more flavourful than the first one. Once everything is boiled & soft, temper the mixture. After that, add lemon juice and fresh coriander.
- Sugar is entirely optional. You can skip it if you don’t like sweetness in your vegetable. Lemon juice is still a viable add-on. However, I suggest you not miss the lemon juice.
- Using ghee is preferable for tempering instead of butter or cooking oil.
- You can also pressure cook the dal beforehand. However, we recommend you not add any spices or the lauki. Just add turmeric, salt, and ginger-garlic paste doing so.
- If you are pressure cooking the dal at medium heat, then approximately 7-8 whistle will cook it properly, depending on how long you have soaked it. It will take fewer whistles if you’ve soaked it for longer hours. Similarly, 4-5 whistles will be enough on higher flame and longer soaking hours.
- You can skip the ginger-garlic paste if you want. Finely chop them both instead.
- Adding tomatoes to the dish is also possible. If you want to add them, cook the chopped tomatoes in the sauteed cumin seeds before adding the dal and lauki.
- You can adjust the spices as per your taste. Also, you can either add only one of the red chilli powder or green chillies.
- Since they have a similar taste profile, lauki can be swapped in this dish with zucchini. Likewise, yellow cucumber is also a good substitute for lauki. But you need to add less water as the vegetable has high water content.