Dalcha is an in Indian stew of Hyderabad (the capital city of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh) origin. I have made Dalcha all my married life and not once did I know that it is a food of Hyderabadi cuisine! I guess, growing up in Singapore, we didn't really discuss about a particular food's origin.
It is traditionally made with mutton and chana dal and seasoned with ginger garlic paste and tamarind. It serves as a great accompaniment to Briyani, a rice dish made with vegetables or meat. But I believe it goes very well with almost any gourmet rice dishes - Mint Rice , Kitcheri etc...
I have dished out a vegetarian version of Dalcha to accompany Healthy Vegetable Briyani ( I will be posting this recipe soon)which I will be making today.
Ingredients (serves 4)
1/3 cup Chana dal ( See Note)
1/3 cup Toor dal ( See Note )
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
2 pinches of salt
1 medium sized carrot, sliced
1 medium potato, skin scrubbed and cubed medium
3 or 4 French Beans, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 green chilli, whole
1 tomato, cubed medium sized
extract of 1 inch tamarind pulp
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp ground pepper
salt to season
coriander leaves for garnishing
2 tbsp. canola oil
1 medium onion, sliced thinly
1 tsp ginger garlic paste (See Note)
1 tsp chili powder
1/3 cup plain non fat yoghurt
Soak the dals for 3 hours and boil with salt and turmeric powder till soft and mushy.
Heat another pot of water and add in all the vegetables, spices, tamarind extract and salt. Boil till the vegetables are cooked. Pour in the cooked dals and keep on low heat.
Take a tempering pan. Add the oil and fry the onions, then the ginger garlic paste. Reduce fire to low and add in the chilli powder. Stir and quickly add in the yoghurt. Let it temper for 2-3 minutes. Pour this tempered mix into the dal and stir.
Let Dalcha cook for 5 mins on low heat.
Serve warm, garnished with coriander leaves, with any gourmet rice dishes and cucumber yoghurt mix (Raita).
Chana dal and Toor dal are types of lentils found in any Indian or Asian Grocery stores.
Ginger Garlic paste is a blend of equal amounts of ginger and garlic. Used widely as a seasoning in many Indian dishes.
Other vegetables can be used as well eg eggplants, green mango. If using green mango, watch out for the tamarind because it can get too sour.