Winter Vegetable Dal

Winter Vegetable Dal

10 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, Soup Cookbook

This southern-Indian-inspired vegetable dal recipe is rich and creamy thanks to light coconut milk and gets exotic flavor from spice-infused coconut oil. Serve with flatbread or naan.

Ingredients 6 servings

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Original recipe yields 6 servings
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  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 12 fresh curry leaves (see Tip) or 1 large bay leaf
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 serrano chile, finely diced
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 4½ cups water
  • 1½ cups red lentils (see Tip), rinsed
  • 1 (14 ounce) can “lite” coconut milk
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2½ cups cubed peeled butternut squash
  • 2 cups cauliflower florets (1-inch)
  • 1 large Yukon Gold potato (about 8 ounces), cut into ½-inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large pot. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves (if using) and cook until the seeds begin to pop, about 20 seconds. Add onion, chile, ginger and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is starting to brown, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add bay leaf (if using), water, lentils, coconut milk, salt and turmeric to the pot. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently to make sure the lentils don't stick to the bottom. Add squash, cauliflower and potato; return to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender when pierced with a fork, 20 to 25 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat; stir in garam masala and lime juice.
  • Tips: Find fresh curry leaves in the produce section (and sometimes in the freezer) at Asian markets. Any unused leaves can be frozen, airtight, for up to 2 months.
  • Red lentils are excellent in soups, salads and vegetarian stews. You can find them in the natural-foods section of your supermarket or in natural-foods stores.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 1⅔ cups
  • Per serving: 342 calories; 10 g fat(7 g sat); 9 g fiber; 50 g carbohydrates; 15 g protein; 132 mcg folate; 0 mg cholesterol; 3 g sugars; 5,580 IU vitamin A; 29 mg vitamin C; 76 mg calcium; 5 mg iron; 618 mg sodium; 737 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (112% daily value), Vitamin C (48% dv), Folate (33% dv), Iron (28% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 2 fat, 2 starch, 1½ lean protein, ½ vegetable

Reviews 10

March 17, 2014
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By: librasmind
I used up the vegetables in my fridge to make this recipe and it was great. I didn't have all the spices so I used red curry paste instead. Great way to clean the fridge and have leftovers that reheat easily. Pros: easy, tasty, leftovers, versatile
February 24, 2014
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By: EatingWell User
Tastes fantastic and easy to make. Has lots of vegetables, very easy to prepare, and tastes better than soup in most resturants , which are loaded with salt, if you love indian spices, you will like this soup. Pros: Easy, great flavor.
February 04, 2014
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By: EatingWell User
Tasty dish I only used half a jalapeno instead of a serrano which was enough for my family. I used a 1 lb bag of frozen cauliflower florets for ease and they were fine. I also added frozen peas right before serving to cool it down and add some color. My husband added some greek yogurt to give a more substance for his taste. Pros: Really ready in 30 minutes from beginning of cooking until serving. Cons: It was a bit of prep to lay everything out and cut up the veggies.
February 01, 2014
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By: EatingWell User
Like eating at my fav. Indian restarurant Fabulous!! I served with naan bread. Lots of leftovers that I served with basmati rice. I added 2 peppers because I like it spicey!! Will fix this often!!
January 08, 2014
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By: EatingWell User
Winter Dal Soup is Sunshine in a Bowl This soup is delicious. I used the remainder of a box of vegetable stock instead of some of the water. It is hearty, healthy, and chock full of stuff I wanted to cook up and get off the counter! Pros: Easy to prepare Cons: Could be bland, brown mustard seeds could be a challenge
January 07, 2014
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By: Jutta
Super Soup! Loved this recipe. Easy to make and tasty. We prefer a bit more spice, so added shiratcha when eating it. Next time will add red pepper flakes while sauteing the onions, etc. Pros: Easy to make. Cons: Needs a bit more spice.
January 06, 2014
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By: EatingWell User
Healthy and delicious! I cooked this dal for my family and everybody loved it! It smelled amazing and tasted delicious. The instructions were very clear and easy to follow. I did not have butternut squash on hand, so substituted with cubed carrots. I also added a little bit more salt than the recipe called for. I will definitely cook it again. Pros: easy, simple, healthy Cons: none
January 04, 2014
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By: scokargovern
Making the Winter Vegetable Dal was as enjoyable as eating it! We made this Vegetable Dal along with the Indian flatbread and enjoyed the spice of the soup coupled with the nutty flavor of the flatbread. We doubled the recipe to share with our friends who are also trying to clean up their diet. Pros: Delicious finished product! The kids loved it as much as I did!
December 27, 2013
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By: EatingWell User
Yummy! Very easy and tasty. Didn't have squash and didn't miss it, but did add cubed (and sauted) tofu for more protein. A nice addition. Next time will add green beans for color. Pros: Easy & tasty
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