Recipe: Dal palak (moong dal and spinach curry)

02 November 2023
Recipe: Dal palak (moong dal and spinach curry)

This is comfort food at its finest!

Dal palak is a very famous, healthy North Indian dish made with moong dal, spinach and spices. It is easy to prepare as the moong dal cooks more quickly than other dals. I eat dal palak often, as it's not only delicious but has high nutritional values and health benefits. It gives balance to my diet and is easy to digest too. Serve this lovely dish on cold evenings or when you are feeling poorly.

Serves 2


  • 150g moong dal
  • 60ml sunflower oil
  • ½tbs cumin seeds
  • ½tsp asafoetida
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • ¼tsp ground turmeric
  • 1tsp ground coriander
  • ¼tsp red chilli powder
  • ½tsp ginger and garlic paste
  • ½tsp salt
  • 1 green chilli, chopped
  • 150g baby spinach, chopped

To serve

Rotli or your choice of rice dish


Wash the dal in cold water and then soak in a bowl with 1 litre cold water for 2-3 hours. Rinse in fresh water before using.

Heat the oil in a wide pan over a high heat for two minutes. Add the cumin seeds and once they start to crackle, add the asafoetida and garlic and stir well. Reduce the heat to medium.

Add the dal and stir to coat in the spiced oil. Add 750ml water, stir quickly and then add all the other ingredients, except the spinach. Cover and cook for about 18-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the dal is cooked through.

To check, take a piece of dal and squeeze in between your finger and thumb; it should crush easily. If the dal is too dry, add a little water to loosen.

Add the spinach, turn off the heat and cover for 2-3 minutes before serving. with rotli or rice.

If you are not serving the curry straight away, store it in the fridge in an airtight container for up to three days, then reheat until piping hot before serving.

TIPS As the spinach cooks very fast, add it right at the end of the cooking process and let it wilt in the hot pan before serving. Kale can be used instead of spinach.

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