Persian Dal

Atoosa Sepehr

Atoosa Sepehr

30th November 2018
Atoosa Sepehr

Persian Dal

Persian dal, a vegetarian dish, is easy to make and very tasty. Although it looks a little like Indian dal, the combination of ingredients is quite different. Dal adas (Persian dal) originated in the city of Bushehr in the south of Iran, on the Persian Gulf. It is usualy served with Persian rice.


  • Serves 4
  • 3 tbsp vegetable or light olive oil
  • 3 large onions, finely chopped
  • 1 large bulb of garlic, cloves seperated and crushed
  • 1/2 tbsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 200g red lentils, rinsed
  • 750ml vegetable stock
  • 1 large potato (about 250g), peeled and chopped into roughtly 1cm cubes
  • 30g tomato purée
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1/4-1 tsp chilli powder
  • Salt
  • Chopped fresh coriander and red chilli to garnish (optional)


Add the oil and onions to a large pan on a medium heat and fry for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft and beginning to turn golden brown.
Add the garlic and cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add the turmeric, cumin and cinnamon and stir for 30 seconds before adding the lentils and mixing well.
Add the stock, stir, and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting, cover with a lid and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add the potatoes, give it a good stir, put the lid back on and cook for a further 20-25 minutes or until the potatoes are tender, stirring every now and then to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Add the tomato purée, lime juice and chilli powder to taste and stir well. Taste and add salt if needed. Cook on a medium heat for a couple of minutes without the lid (if the texture is too thick, add a little boiling water). Scatter over some chopped coriander and chilli, if using, and serve.

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