Did you know that India has it’s own version of pasta ???? It’s called as Dal Dhokli !!! Read this post- Dal Dhokli Rajasthani style – pressure cooker (Instant Pot) method to find out more about this interesting delicious recipe. Being a Rajasthani ( marwari) I grew up eating this comforting one pot meal . My mom made this traditional dish at least once a week. Hence this meal is close to my heart. Dal Dhokli is one of the most popular traditional dish from the State of Rajasthan as well as Gujarat . In simple words it is the “Best Indian Lentil Pasta ” ever!!! A nutritious pressure cooker meal that comes together with 20 minute preparation time , rest leave it to the Instant Pot to do it’s work! Dal Dhokli is a healthy food choice hence preferred for everyday meal menu plan for lunch or dinner.
Dal Dhokli is a vegetarian one pot meal option, apt for a “no onion no garlic” diet, can easily be made oil free and a staple for the ones who follow JAIN diet. It is an appropriate meal option for Jain tithis like Aatam , Chaudas and Paryushan as well.
I like to make Dal Dhokli on a gloomy rainy day when I don’t feel like cooking much . As fall is setting in this will be our comfort food all season long . A big bowl of this nutritious piping hot Dal Dhokli just makes up for a complete meal. I have always used my Stove top pressure cooker to make Dal Dhokli . But now I make all my pressure cooker meals in the Instant Pot as I own one. The method is exactly the same for both stove top and an electric pressure cooker (Instant Pot) .
Ok so what does Dal Dhokli mean?
Dal means lentil and Dhokli means Spiced wheat flour dumplings . The dumplings are made at home and then the two are simmered together with some spices to form a nutritious and filling one pot meal. You may very well call it as “Indian Pasta” where Lentil base acts as a sauce without tomatoes or dairy and the dumplings are like freshly rolled pasta like gnocchi without potatoes. Imagine freshly rolled pasta without eggs !!!!This recipe is completely vegan if you just substitute coconut oil for ghee. It’s amazing how all cuisines of the world have some similarity. I sometimes wonder why this humble Indian comfort food isn’t well known worldwide!!!
What is the difference between Rajasthani dal dhokli and Gujarati dal Dhokli?
Traditional Rajasthani recipe for dal dhokli uses Chilka moong dal / Split green lentil or sometimes yellow moong dal or urad dal as the base sauce . Spiced whole wheat flour dough is rolled between the hands and dumplings are made . Whereas Gujarati Dal Dhokli is typically made using Toor dal / Tuvar dal also known as Pegion Pea . Moreover Gujarati style dal dhokli is sweet as well as spicy and uses peanuts too . Whereas Rajasthani dal dhokli isn’t sweet at all. Instead of wheat flour dough dumplings it is made by rolling the dough in big rotis and cutting it vertically and horizontally to attain ribbon like rectangular stripes which refers to dhokli. I love both versions of Dal Dhokli and savor each style at least twice a month for lunch or dinner.
Can I add vegetables to the Dal Dhokli?
Traditional Rajasthani dal dhokli recipe calls for no vegetables. But there is no right or wrong about modifying a recipe to your taste. You can definitely add vegetables to this recipe . I do it sometimes. Because everything is pressure cooked ,the choice of vegetables used matters. You do not want to use vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower which can turn into a mush (unless you prefer that way). The vegetables that I sometimes use in this Dal Dhokli recipe are –
Seasonal vegetables like peas , Spinach (or other greens chopped) , diced carrots, chopped cabbage , diced onions .
Can Dal Dhokli be a complete meal?
Whenever we are bored of the regular Indian Thali meal that has Roti, subzi, dal and rice I simply make Dal Dhokli instead . It is so much easier than cooking full Indian meal . As I mentioned above I add veggies itself to the pot or toss up a quick salad like a cabbage slaw , Cucumber Tomato Kachumber or some steamed vegetables on the side for a complete meal. Needless to say less pots and pans to clean . Dal Dhokli being a one pot meal and as filling as a wholesome.
Can I make Dal Dhokli / Indian Lentil Pasta ahead of time?
Yes you can. It makes great make ahead of time lunch or dinner. Good for office meal prep and lunch pack . Ideal lunch option for kids too.
Can I freeze this Dal Dhokli / Indian Lentil Pasta?
Yes I have frozen dal dhokli couple of times. Just freeze in freezer safe containers or freezer safe ziplock bag. It freezes well up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge or over the counter for few hours. The consistency will be thick as lentil sauces tend to thicken after cooling. You can add some warm water to get the desired consistency. Once thawed do not re freeze. Have piping hot with a generous squeeze of lemon.
How do I make Dal Dhokli?
Given below is a pictorial step by step making of the Dhoklis aka dumplings. I know what are you thinking ?? Hmmm making freshly rolled pasta seems a lot of work , I am not sure I want to make these dhoklis.
Sorry to say that You are wrong!!! It takes no more than 15 minutes of your time to make a ton of these dumplings . In fact the entire recipe come together in less than an hour with only 25 minutes of actual prep time.
Here is what I do to make the dhokli process more efficient-
I first knead the dough that takes less than 3 minutes . Let the dough rest covered for 5 minutes.
After this I rinse the lentil and keep it aside.
Now I switch on my Instant Pot , season it with ghee, spices and pour enough water and lentis that is called for .
Loosely cover it with a lid so that it comes to a boil. Next step I get back to make the dhoklis.
Once the dough is rested I knead it for 10 seconds to make it smooth and divide it to make long logs .
Then I pull small rounds and make an impression in the center of each round to form a disc as shown in the photo. Once all the dhoklis are made I simply have to put it in the pressure cooker with the simmering lentil . Close the lid and it will be done in minutes.
Why can’t I put everything together in one go ?
I let the water boil first and then put the dhoklis to avoid them to clump together . You know how we handle pasta especially freshly made one. We add the pasta when water comes to a rolling boil. Same rule applies for these dhoklis. If I would put the dhoklis in room temperature water then these freshly rolled dumplings would stick to each other giving you big lumpy outcome.
How do we eat Dal Dhokli ?
PIPING HOT or at least warm . We love it with a dollop of achaar/ pickle and a side of Papad.
Can I make this recipe ghee free / oil free ?
Definitely . Just put water , spices and lentils to the pot and let it come to a boil. Rest follow the recipe as is.
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Dal Dhokli Rajasthani style – pressure cooker (Instant Pot) method recipe –
I am using 6 qt Instant Pot for this recipe . You may easily adjust this recipe for desired servings .
Dal Dhokli Rajasthani style - pressure cooker (Instant Pot) method
A nutritious pressure cooker meal that comes together with only 20 minute preparation time , rest leave it to the Instant Pot to do it's work!
Dough for making Dhoklis
- 1 cup whole wheat flour/ atta
- 2 teaspoon cooking oil
- ½ teaspoon lal mirch powder/ Indian paprika
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric / haldi
- ½ teaspoon ajwain / carom seeds
- 1/8 th teaspoon salt
- Lukewarm water as needed to knead a stiff dough poori like dough not soft one.
For making dal/ lentil base
- 1 cup Split green lentil/ chilka moong dal
- 3 tablespoon chana dal optional
- 1 tablespoon ghee/ cooking oil of choice
- Pinch of hing asafoetida
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 green chili deseeded and finely chopped, optional
- ½ teaspoon turmeric/ haldi
- ½ teaspoon coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon lal mirch powder/ Indian paprika
- 5 cups filtered water
- Fistful of chopped coriander/ cilantro optional
- Fresh lemon
Make the dough by mixing all the DRY ingredients called for it .
Now slowly add lukewarm water as needed , to reach consistency of a stiff dough.
Cover with a damp cloth and keep aside .
Wash the lentil several times under cold water .
Switch on the Instant Pot on Sautee mode .
Add in ghee to the inner pot.
Once warm add in cumin seeds, hing , green chili followed by other spices and immediately add water .
Now add in the lentil and salt.
Let it come to a boil.
While the lentil comes to a boil start making the dhoklis .
Once the dough is rested I knead it for 10 seconds to make it smooth and divide it to make long logs .
Then I pull small rounds and make an impression in the center of each round to form a disc as shown in the photo.
Make sure you place dhoklis in a wide dish/ plate so that they are not piling on top of each other. This is done to avoid them sticking together.
By this time the dal will be boiling.
Switch off the IP by pressing cancel
Now that the dhoklis are ready add them to the pot slowly.
Give one gentle stir.
Now place the Instant Pot lid with knob on SEALING position.
Press MANUAL High 4 minutes.
After the IP beeps let the pressure release naturally (NPR)
Once the pin drops down it is safe to open the lid.
The dal dhokla is ready.
Give it a stir , taste and adjust the spices if needed.
It should have perfect thick soup consistency. Remember it will thicken as it cools.
Add more water if necessary to get desired consistency.
Just before serving add in cilantro and generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
Serve alongside with some pickle or papad .
If vegan , use oil instead of ghee.
The spice level of this recipe is 3 on 5 , 5 being hot.
Do not knead a soft dough like you make for rotis. You have to knead a stiff dough like for pooris.
Dal Dhokli thickens as it cools. Especially if there are leftovers for next day. You may add some warm water later to get desired consistency.
Makes great office or school lunch pack .
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Don’t have an Instant Pot?
Simply use your stove top (medium size ) pressure cooker and follow the recipe above . Cook on medium heat for 4 whistles like you do it for making Dal. If the whistles of the pressure cooker tend to go quick (some pressure cookers whistle continuously or within 30 seconds )then disregard it and just cook in total for 15 minutes . Let the pressure release naturally .
Pin this Dal Dhokli recipe for later reference-
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