Spinach Masoor Dal/ Spinach Puy Lentil Curry
Spinach Masoor Dal/ Spinach Puy Lentil Curry
Spinach Masoor Dal or Spinch Puy Lentil Curry is a wholesome, healthy, easy to prepare, creamy, with flavors of spinach and coconut. Best enjoyed with some plain rice or any Indian Flatbread.
What is Masoor Dal or Puy Lentil?
Known as whole or sabut masoor, flat lentils or puy lentils they are packed with proteins, dietary fiber and Vitamin B1. The colours of these legumes or lentils range from yellow to orange red to green or brown and black. They are used for making curries, soups and even salads. Today I will share with you the recipe of spinach masoor dal or curry. Serve it with hot rotis,naan, bread or rice. Masoor or Puy lentils cooks well and quickly making is one of the most used lentils or pulses. I usually soak it for 30 minutes or so in warm water and then put it in the pressure cooker. 2-3 whistles and its done. If you want, just boil it in enough water in a saucepan till done. Puy Lentil also makes a good substitute for minced meat.
Cook It Often
I tend to include Puy lentils in my diet at least once a week.Because its a good source of protein. If its not in the form of a curry then I add it to soups, salads or even in baked dishes. Sometimes I make Masoor Dal without spinach, and use only coconut milk. Occasionally, I use spinach and tomatoes. Once you have the basic curry dish to your liking, there are so many variations that you can make. Did you know that they also are a good source of iron? Yes they are. Ideal for vegans as they are a rich source of calcium too.
Recipes using Masoor Dal/ Puy Lentils – whole or split
Lentil and Carrot Kebabs – very often minced meat is replaced with Puy lentils in kebabs to make them vegetarian friendly.
Veggie Shepherd’s Pie – minced meat is replaced with cooked lentils. Its a wholesome and delicious meal.
Vegetarian Mulligatawny Soup – Meat or chicken is replaced by lentils, adding a creamy texture to this traditional soup
Jolly uses a combination of Moong and Lentil along with rice to make the classic khichdi – Moong Masoor Dal Khichdi.
I’m going to try Archana’s Whole Red Lentil Biryani, wholesome and filling.
Try Renu’s Masoor Dal with a tomato onion curry base.
Ingredients Required for Spinach Masoor Dal/ Spinach Puy Lentil Curry
- Masoor Dal – Puy Lentils, whole and not the split variety. For easy cooking its best to soak the lentils in warm water for at least 30 minutes.
- Coconut Milk – I’ve used canned coconut milk. For coconut free curry replace the coconut with water.
- Onion – white, yellow or red, finely chopped
- Garlic – finely chopped or minced
- Ginger – thinly sliced or minced
- Green Chillis – optional, either sliced or minced
- Mustard Seeds – rai
- Cumin Seeds – jeera
- Asafetida – optional. If you want to prepare a gluten free curry, do not add asafetida or use gluten free asafetida.
- Spinach Puree – for homemade spinach puree, blanch about 3-4 cups of roughly chopped spinach in hot water. Cool and puree the spinach.
- Ghee or Oil – depending on what you prefer. For vegan curry omit ghee and replace it any oil of your choice or coconut oil. Ghee is clarified butter.
- Water – required for soaking and cooking the lentils.
- Cinnamon Powder – taj
- Clove Powder – laving
- Coriander Powder – dhania
- Turmeric Powder – haldi
- Salt – add according to your taste
- Fresh Coriander – chopped for garnishing
For Gluten version of Spinach Masoor Dal or Curry avoid using asafetida or use gluten free asafetida.
For Vegan version omit using ghee. Replace it with oil.
For Jain friendly Spinach Masoor Dal omit onion, garlic and ginger.
SPINACH MASOOR DAL
- 1 cup whole masoor dal flat lentils, puy
- 2 cups spinach roughly chopped
- 3 cups warm water
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 big onion finely chopped
- 6 cloves garlic finely chopped or minced
- 1 tsp ginger paste
- 1 tsp green chilli paste
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon powder
- ¼ tsp clove powder
- 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 tbsp ghee clarified butter - optional
- 2 tsps coriander powder
- 2 tbsps fresh coriander chopped
- Wash the lentils and soak it in 2 cups of warm water for about half an hour.
- If you are using fresh spinach, then you need to blanch it. Put 1 cup of water to boil in a saucepan. Add the spinach to the boiling water and remove it as soon as it begins to wilt. Let it cool for a while in a colander.
- When the spinach is cool, liquidize it in a blender using as little water as possible.You should have about 1 cup of spinach puree.
- Put the lentils along with the soaking water to cook over medium flame or in a pressure cooker(3 whistles). Add remaining water. Cook till done. If you are using the pressure cooker, then just use the water the lentils are soaked in. When done, you can add the remaining water.
- In another saucepan, heat the oil/ghee. Add mustard seeds and cumin seeds.
- As soon as the mustard seeds begin to crackle, add the chopped onions.Stir the onions and cook till it turns light brown in colour.
- Add the garlic, chilli and ginger paste. Stir fry for 30 seconds.
- Add the turmeric powder, coriander powder and mix well. Add the spinach and salt and stir.
- Add cooked lentils to the above mixture.
- Add any remaining water and coconut milk. Heat the dal or curry till it becomes hot.
- Allow it to simmer for 5-10 minutes.
- Add cinnamon and clove powder and mix well.
- Garnish with fresh coriander just before serving with some rice or Indian flatbread.
Amount of salt and chilli entirely depends on your taste.
If you cook the lentils in a saucepan, you may need more water.
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September 28, 2015 at 4:45 pm
Very healthy combo.. I normally use the split dal..:)
My Wife Makes
September 29, 2015 at 5:33 am
Amazing dal recipe! Love the step-by-steps photos too – very clear instructions! Definitely keen to try this one. 🙂
My Wife Makes
September 29, 2015 at 5:34 am
P.S. It's me, Levan! 🙂
September 29, 2015 at 8:18 am
I am so making this, it sounds wonderful. I love dal, but tend to make it with split red lentils. I have a bag of green lentils in the cupboard and it's autumn so time for warming dishes like this 🙂
Shunmuga sundari C
September 29, 2015 at 9:56 am
What a Wholesome dish!! Super healthy!!
September 29, 2015 at 5:52 pm
I love spinach dhal and this looks great made with puy lentils.
January 30, 2021 at 2:32 pm
Two of my favorite ingredients: Spinach and Puy Lentils. A great dish for the night that you do want to have a healthy vegan dinner.
January 30, 2021 at 4:43 pm
Thanks Giangi, as a vegetarian this curry is a regular at home.
January 30, 2021 at 8:11 pm
This such a complete meal and I specially prefer this in winters when fresh greens are available .
January 30, 2021 at 8:19 pm
January 31, 2021 at 1:37 pm
This is a lovely dal recipe with masoor. I have used spinach with tur or combo. Must give this a try sometime. It will be a different variety for my family too.
January 31, 2021 at 5:33 pm
Thank you so much Jayashree, please do try masoor with spinach. Its delicious and healthy.
January 31, 2021 at 5:25 pm
Wow! Spinach Masoor Dal is definitely a great way to include greens and lentils in a vegetarian diet! Absolutely love the curry now I have another way of making masoor. 😀
January 31, 2021 at 5:29 pm
Thank you so much Archana. It sure is a good dish for a vegetarian diet especially since masoor is rich in proteins.
February 1, 2021 at 7:36 pm
I’ve almost always cooked spinach with green mung lentils and that too is a very basic affair with just salt, red chilies, turmeric and cumin. This spinach and lentil stew has a lot more layers of flavour from coconut milk and spices. I’d love to enjoy this delicious dish as meal-soup on a cold night. Can’t wait till I try this!
February 1, 2021 at 9:01 pm
Thank you so much Maria, some of the tricks I had use to get kids to eat spinach. Now they’re grown ups but the recipes remain the same.
February 1, 2021 at 9:54 pm
I am just in love with this spinach masoor dal! The flavours are just perfect for cold winter nights, and of course, the fact that it’s healthy is even better!
February 2, 2021 at 4:28 pm
Thank you so much Azlin. What we mums have to do to sneak in veggies for our kids and this is one of the recipes. Had to get them to eat spinach.
February 3, 2021 at 8:19 pm
Although I have made spinach dal before I love combination with the masoor. What a quick and easy recipe.
February 3, 2021 at 10:04 pm
Thanks Mireille, it definitely is a quick and easy recipe.
September 2, 2021 at 10:10 am
When I read the heading I thought it’s similar to dal palak but I was wrong. This is a wonderful recipe with sabut masoor. I also liked the use of spinach puree and coconut milk into it. Definitely a must try.
September 2, 2021 at 3:23 pm
Thanks Amrita, I try and make our daily dals a bit different and exciting. Hubby wouldn’t min d the same type everyday but I’m the one who looks for different tastes.
September 2, 2021 at 10:09 pm
Spinach Mansoor dal is so nutritious and flavourful. I love dals and this is absolutely my kind of dal. Coconut milk makes the dal even more tastier. Beautifully presented.
September 2, 2021 at 10:16 pm
Thank you so much Preethi. Love the flavour of coconut milk.
September 2, 2021 at 10:53 pm
I love the beautiful green bowl here. The spinach masoor dal looks so comforting with the coconut milk and the roasted garlic. Smooth spinach dal, yummy.
September 3, 2021 at 12:41 am
Thank you so much Seema. The roasted garlic adds so much flavour.
September 3, 2021 at 2:33 am
I love this delicious spinach and masoor dal simple easy and healthy. Do you know till I read your post I did not relate them to puy lentils I feel sheepish now.
These lentils I try to include in our meals on a regular basis. Thanks for linking to my biryani.
September 3, 2021 at 5:41 pm
Thanks Archana, as bloggers we are always learning something new.
September 3, 2021 at 5:46 am
Spinach Masoor Dal looks delicious, healthy and makes a hearty meal with hot rotis. Liked the addition of coconut milk to it, lends a different taste.
September 3, 2021 at 5:40 pm
Thank you so much Jayashree, it definitely adds a different flavour.
February 23, 2023 at 12:31 pm
I will be trying this recipe tonight but just wanted to ask.
You say to use cinnamon and clove powder but where do you add this in the steps?
I have read the recipe several times, am I missing this.
Will comment again once I have made it.
February 23, 2023 at 8:20 pm
Hello Hetal, thank you pointing out the error. For this recipe I usually add it after it has simmered. That way these spices do not affect the overall colour of your dish. Please let me know how the dal turned out for you.