Hyderabadi Khatti Daal hails from the famous city of Hyderabad in South India. Well known for many things, their cuisine is amongst the most famous in South Asia.
Unesco.org lists it as a "creative city of gastronomy" and the food is a fusion of the Mughal, Arab and Turkish style of cooking alongside the native Telugu and Marathwada style.
The specific blend of spices and generous use of sesame seeds, coconut, tamarind and nuts are a delight to the palate.I have yet to try a Hyderabadi recipe I've disliked; Bhagare Baingan, Mirchi Ka Saalan, Hyderabadi Khatti Daal, Khubani Ka Meetha and on and on.
I love lentils in any form. Growing up they were always present at my family's dinner table. Fortunately for me there is a huge variety of lentils or daal as we call it in our native language.
I use split masoor daal, one of the quickest and easiest of all the lentils to cook, for this recipe. The Hyderabadi Khatti Daal Recipe takes a mere 15 minutes in the instant pot and 1 hour on a stovetop. If you've ever cooked lentils you know this is not very long.
While you're at it, try the other two daal recipes I have on this site as well, dhaba style maash daal, a unique recipe as it's one of the few lentils not cooked in a soup form and chicken mulligatawny soup cooked using toor daal.
A light, flavorful and fragrant soup, this recipe is wonderful as a starter, a side or an entree.
A one pot dish, you will definitely enjoy this recipe. The notes below the recipe provide some much needed clarification on the tamarind used in this recipein. In the event of any confusion please comment below with any questions!
HYDERABADI KHATTI DAAL
- 1.5 cups masoor daal red lentils
- 6 cups water
- 1.5 tsp ginger/garlic paste
- 3 serrano chillies
- 2 tomatoes
- 3 tsp salt
- 1 tsp red chilli powder
- ½ tsp turmeric powder
- ¼ cup cooking oil
- 2 dry red chillies
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 5 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 15 curry leaves
- 4 cups tamarind water
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- Combine the lentils, water, tomatoes, Serrano chillies, salt, red chili powder and turmeric.
- For INSTANT POT cook on highpressure for 15 minutes and do a 5 minute release before venting and opening lid.
- For STOVE TOP cook on high till the mixture begins to boil and then cook on medium for an hour till everything is tender and well blended. You should have a thin soupy consistency by the end.
- Add the tamarind pulp** and mix well.
- In a small frying pan heat ¼ cup oil and saute the garlic, red peppers, cumin seeds, mustard seeds and curry leaves till light brown and then add to the lentils with the oil.
- Garnish with cilantro and serve with basmati rice.
- For the tamarind pulp I soak a quarter block of tamarind in 4 cups of water for one hour. Next I remove the seeds and strain the mixture to make a thin paste.
- If using a Tamarind Concentrate, 1-2 Tablespoons should be enough.
- 1-2 tablespoons of Lemon Juice is a good substitute if tamarind is unavailable.