Dal Veg Pulao (Red Lentil and Vegetable Rice)

There are an endless variety of rice dishes within Indian cuisine and rightly so considering rice is one of the staple foods across the Indian subcontinent! The variations, flavours, textures of each of these rice dishes is very unique to the area it originates from, be it the rich biryani or the simple lemon or jeera rice. One such rice dish is the Dal Veg Pulao (Red Lentils and Vegetable Rice). This is a protein dish similar to the South Indian style toor dal rice variety, Arisi Paruppu Sadam. When time is limited, this dish is the one I go for as it is quick to prepare and is a complete meal in itself.

A simple recipe tempered with onions, garlic and the aromatic spices cinnamon and cloves alongside fresh vegetables, basmati rice and red lentils, making for a hearty and filling meal. To go Dal Veg Pulao a perfect accompaniment is papad, pickle and curd.

Dal Veg Pulao (Red Lentil and Vegetable Rice)

  • Servings: 3-4 people
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients
1 ½ cups long grain or Basmati rice
1 cup red lentils (Masoor dal)
200g green beans
200g or 2 medium red pepper (Capsicum)
1 large brown onion
3 garlic cloves
2-3 dried red chillies
2 bay leaves
1 inch cinnamon stick
3-4 cloves
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
pinch of asafetida
salt to taste
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 ½ cups of water

Method

  1. Firstly rinse the rice in water until it runs clear of starch. Set aside to soak in water. 

    Basmati rice soaked in water
    Basmati rice soaked in water
  2. Rinse the red lentils in water until it runs clear of starch. Set aside to soak in water. 

    Soaked red lentils
    Soaked red lentils
  3. Prepare onion and spice mixture to add to tempering. 

    Onion, garlic, bay leaves, dried red chillies, cinnamon stick and cloves
    Onion, garlic, bay leaves, dried red chillies, cinnamon stick and cloves
  4. Chop onions and garlic cloves and crush cinnamon, cloves, red chillies and bay leaves in a pestle and mortar. Or crush using a mini chopper. Set aside. 

    Chopped onion and spice mixture
    Chopped onion and spice mixture
  5. Chop red peppers and green beans. 

    Green beans and red peppers
    Green beans and red peppers
  6. Heat oil in a non-stick pan, add the cumin seeds, asafetida.

    Cumin seeds and asafetida
    Cumin seeds and asafetida
  7. Then add onion mixture. 

    Onion and spice mixture added to oil
    Onion and spice mixture added to oil
  8. Sauté on a low heat until spices are fragrant and onions become golden brown and mixture reduces in quantity. 

    Onion and spice mixture sauted until quantity has reduced
    Onion and spice mixture sautéed until quantity has reduced
  9. Add all chopped vegetables and mix well with onion mixture. 

    Peppers and green beans mixed with onion mixture
    Peppers and green beans mixed with onion mixture
  10. Add salt and water. Sauté vegetables on a medium heat for 5 minutes. 
  11. Drain the soaked red lentils and add to the vegetables. Gently mix the red lentils in with the vegetables and onion mixture and allow to simmer with the vegetables for a few minutes. 

    Red lentils added to vegetables
    Red lentils added to vegetables
  12. Add drained rice and lemon juice. 

    Rice added to red lentils and vegetables
    Rice added to red lentils and vegetables
  13. Mix vegetables, rice and red lentils gently but thoroughly. 

    Red lentils and rice mixed well with vegetables
    Red lentils and rice mixed well with vegetables
  14. Set to low heat level, cover and allow rice and vegetables to cook until water is absorbed. During cooking, check if there is enough water which is dependant in the quantity and quality of the rice; use a fork to gently stir the rice without breaking the grains.
  15. Once rice has cooked, fluff and allow the rice to stand briefly.
  16. Serve dal veg pulao hot with papad, pickle, yogurt or a salad. 
    Dal Veg Pulao (Red Lentil and Vegetable Rice)
    Dal Veg Pulao (Red Lentil and Vegetable Rice)

Let me know how this works for you.

Best Wishes,

Krishna

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