Saturday, March 3, 2012

Black Bean Dal - Indian Spiced Black Beans

While I am not known for my healthy cooking, there are many vegetarian dishes that I enjoy.  Indian dal is one of them...Dal is just a generic word for beans/legumes.  This is a dish that I usually make when it's only me at home, since it comes together in only a few minutes...and I always have the ingredients on hand.

So black beans are not something you find in Indian cooking, they do work well in this kind of dish.  Canned Kidney beans would also work very well in this recipe.

Black Bean Dal

1- 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 tbs vegetable oil
a pinch of asafetida, optional (found at Indian grocery or online)
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 onion, diced
1/4 to 1/2 hot green chile, left whole with seeds
a handful or cherry tomatoes, chopped
1/4 tsp turmeric
salt, to taste

In a skillet over medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil.  When the oil it hot, add in the asafetida and cumin; let sizzle for about 5 seconds.  Add the onion and green chile, saute until browned.  Add the chopped tomatoes and turmeric, saute until the tomatoes begin to soften.  Add the black beans and 1/2 cup water.  Mashing some of the beans with a wooden spoon gives it a better texture.  Bring to a simmer.  Let simmer for 10 minutes.  If necessary add more water and continue cooking until the desired consistency is reached.  Season with salt.


  1. I love the color in this dish - looks so yummy. It is very different to use the black beans, but I LIKE IT! I crave all of the spiciness of Indian food so this sounds like a perfect meal to me - esp with some jasmine rice or naan.

  2. I love black beans and I'm always looking for new ways to use them. This looks great with that yellow rice!

  3. Now this is just the sort of dish I would love, think N would as well. Bookmarked. Thanks Diane

  4. I have an Indian market close by, I'll have to look for the exotic sounding spice. Love that photo with the dark beans and that yellow rice. Very nice.

  5. This is definitely something we would love. I kind of stay away from Indian food at home even though we love it. This would be a beautiful addition to any meal. Thanks.

  6. I wouldn't have thought to make dal with black beans, but for busy nights this would be a much better option than no dal at all. Thanks for the recipe!

  7. The colors here are lovely. We eat a ton of black beans. I need to change up the way I'm serving them. This sounds great!

  8. Nice, Bo! I like the flavor profile, might even slip in some curry paste.