Bangladesh: Making Tadka Dal

Food for the Hungry (FH) works in Bangladesh where tadka dal is a staple dish served in many communities. This specific recipe and demonstration comes from FH staff living in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, where families are starting to have food stability. Through savings groups, women are learning to run their own small business to earn income for food and sending their children to school. Here is a taste of Bangladesh with a recipe from the field.

Photo-1Take one cup of lentils (pulses) and wash to prepare for boiling.

Photo-2Put the lentils into a sauce pan, adding sliced onion, salt, garlic paste, oil, red chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander seed powder and Indian bay leaves.
Photo-3.Turn on medium heat and stir fry for five to eight minutes, browning onions.
Photo-4.Add six cups of water (you can add less depending on how thick you want your dal). Bring the water to a boil and then simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the lentils are tender.
Photo-5Making the tadka is the next step in preparing dal. Once the dal is fully cooked, take another pan and put some oil in it and turn to medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the chopped garlic and onion and sauté until both are golden brown.
Photo-7Put the tadka into the dal and put some sliced green chilies in it (you can skip the green chilies if you don’t want it too spicy).
Photo-8Simmer the tadka and dal together for three minutes and sprinkle some dried cumin seed power on top of it. Mix the powder into the dal and pour it into a bowl.

Photo-10Serve the dal with steamed rice. In Bangladesh, the dal is poured over rice and eaten by hand.

Dal recipe
1 cup of lentils (pulses)
2 sliced medium onions
2 tablespoons of cooking oil
½ tablespoon of garlic paste
½ teaspoon of red chili powder
½ teaspoon of turmeric powder
½ teaspoon of coriander seed powder
3 to 4 Indian bay leaves or Tejpatta
6 ½ cups of water
Salt to taste

Tadka recipe
1 teaspoon of oil
2 chopped garlic cloves
3 to 4 sliced green chilis
1 teaspoon of dried cumin seed powder

Learn how to make other recipes from other FH communities, like Peruvian Olluco with Charqui or Ethiopian injera, where because of partners like you, people are becoming more food secure.


About Nahid Bushra

Nahid Bushra works as Communication System Manager for Food for the Hungry in Bangladesh. She started working as a teacher and later joined FH to contribute more for vulnerable people from various communities. She says, “For me life is like box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get next.”

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