Cook's Hideout: Dal Kootu (Poritha Kootu)

March 01, 2014

Dal Kootu (Poritha Kootu)

Dal is something that is made almost every other day in my household. Not just my home, but that is the case in almost every Indian households. Lentils form one of the main source of protein to vegetarians. I am always looking for new ways of making the same old pappu/ dal.
My everyday dals are usually very simple like this tomato pappu or this palakura pappu. But occasionally I do make kootu where dal is cooked with vegetables and coconut-peppercorn masala paste. My mom learned it from a Tamil neighbor.
Dal Kootu (Poritha Kootu)
Today's recipe is from the cookbook, Dakshin by Chandra Padmanabhan. Masala pasta is almost similar to what my mom makes, but the addition of mixed vegetables was interesting to me. This is a perfect recipe to make when you have those odds and ends of veggies in the fridge that need to be used up. Any combination of veggies can be used here -- apart from the ones I have used potato, zucchini, cauliflower can also be added to the kootu.

Dal Kootu (Poritha Kootu)
Pesara pappu/ Moong dal - ¼cup
French Beans - ½cup
Carrot - 1 medium, diced
Cabbage - 1 cup, chopped
Green peas - ½cup
Turmeric - ½tsp
Curry leaves - 8~10
Salt - to taste

Spice Paste:
Cumin seeds - ¾tsp
Peppercorns - 1tsp
Dry red chilies - 2
Hing/ Asafoetida - ½tsp
Coconut - 2tbsp, grated

For Tempering:
Mustard seeds - 1tsp
Cumin seeds - ½tsp
Urad dal - 1tsp
Dry red Chili - 1, broken
Dal Kootu (Poritha Kootu)
  • Pressure cook dal until soft. Set aside.
  • Make the Spice Paste: Heat 1tsp oil in a pan; add cumin seeds, peppercorns, red chilies and hing until seeds start to splutter. Mix in the coconut and grind into a fine paste, adding very little water.
  • In a saucepan, boil the vegetables with salt and turmeric.
  • Add the cooked dal to the vegetables and simmer for couple of minutes. 
  • Next add the spice paste and cook for 4~5 minutes for the flavors to mingle.
  • Heat 2tsp ghee in a small saucepan; add all the ingredients for tempering. When the seeds start to splutter, add it to the dal.
  • Serve hot, garnished with curry leaves. 
Dal Kootu (Poritha Kootu)
Linking the comforting dal to Valli's 'Cooking from Cookbook Challenge -- March - Week 1'.

Linking to Fabulous Feast Friday -- Week# 4 -- hosted by Saras & Priya.


  1. Such a comfort food. Looks really yummy..

  2. Health and delicious kootu,perfect for a comforting lunch...

  3. I've got some odds and ends of veggies in the fridge maybe i'll try this for dinner later. looks very good

  4. Dal is such a comfort food, i make it almost everyday, coz kuttu is such a fan of dal n rice. Addition of veggies makes it a complete meal.

  5. Poricha kootu is one of my fav!Looks very good Pavani :)

  6. A bowl of rice and dal kootu with some lemon pickle,definitely makes me happy..inviting kootu.

  7. Oh yum that's a yummy kootu I love it with ghee and ruce

  8. I love these poricha kootu, they are so healthy and with veggies, it's even more good..very lovely lunch sides Pavani..


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