I first tasted this ‘dal’ while visiting Rajasthan in a restaurant while having a typical Rajasthani thali. This protein packed ‘dal’ is from the Mewar region of Rajasthan where five different types of lentils are cooked together on slow fire. It is also known as ‘Dal Pancharatna’ in some places. The word ‘Panch’ means five … hence this dal has been named as there are five types of ‘dals’ have been used. Later I found this recipe in a leading newspaper. As per that recipe the five types of ‘dals are’ : Split and skinned Bengal Gram – Chana Dal, Black Gram – Urad Dal, Green Gram Dal – Moong Dal, Arhar Dal or Pegion Pea, Moth Bean – Moth Dal.
If you do not find ‘moth dal’, you can substitute with ‘masoor dal’ or pink lentil. Traditionally this dal is cooked in ‘Deshi Ghee’ but I have cooked the ‘dal’ with oil and used ‘ghee’ only for tempering. Serve this dal with handmade roti or makki ki roti.
Wash and soak all the dals in water for 30 minutes. Pressure-cook the dals for 3-4 whistles or till they are completely cooked adding a little salt and turmeric powder. Add water if required and mash lightly.
In a kadai or wok heat oil and splutter cumin seeds. Then add the asafetida, cloves, cardamoms, dry red chilies and bay leaf. Fry them till they are fragrant.
Add the ginger paste and chopped tomatoes, turmeric powder and garam masala powder. Fry the masala well on a low flame till the tomatoes become soft and mushy.
Now add the boiled dal in the kadai and simmer for 5-7 minutes.
Check seasoning. Garnish the ‘dal’ with coriander leaves.
While serving drizzle some deshi ghee on Panchmel Dal. Serve with roti, rice or with famous ‘Bati’.