Daali Saaru

I got up early morning in search of vicks bottle. Arrgh ... Stuffy nose, hurting throat and severe headache. All this at same time meant I was unwell with flu virus. Yes its mid September and with temperatures fluctuating the weather is humid some days, hinting that winters will be here soon. Humidity as well as sandstorms in Kuwait, both point to seasonal changes but sadly this all is associated with flu/ viral illness as it carries dusty water droplets that contains all sort of viruses ..

The throbbing pain did not allow me to sleep after that. I pulled myself up from the bed in order to try some home remedies and get some symptomatic relief. It is always better to try out home remedies in the initial days of illness especially in such flu cases and wait for the nature to take its course before taking any medicines or antibiotics. Steam inhalation gave me some instant relief for my nose block . Next was to try something that would soothe the throat pain. Some of the options were drinking ginger tea, turmeric milkSaaru/ Rasams also turn out to be great home remedy. Daali saaru was what came to my mind since preparing it was easy as well as quick. I usually have excess boiled dal stored in the fridge and in emergency situations when I have to cook in shortest time possible [situation like today] this dal came to my rescue. With a plan to cook simple menu for lunch as well as dinner, I entered my kitchen and prepared some rice and this saaru. I enjoyed drinking it like warm soup that helped relieve the discomfort caused by pain while swallowing.

The below recipe has been adapted from the book "Rasachandrika"


1/2 cup boiled tuvar dal [remember the cooked dal should be soft and mash it well] 
1 green chili
3-5 curry leaves [used while boiling]
2 medium sized tomatoes, chopped into cubes [optional]
1 marble sized tamarind [soak in warm water and make a paste]
Salt to taste
2 -3 tbsp jaggery

To grind into saarina pudi
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
Asafoetida [size of bengal gram dal]
3-4 red chillies [I have used byadgi chillies]
3-5 curry leaves
pinch of turmeric powder
Few drops of oil

For seasoning
1 tsp ghee 
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 red chilli
3-5 curry leaves
1/4 tsp of asafoetida powder


Roast the ingredients cumin seeds, coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds, asafoetida, red chilies, curry leaves one by one in few drops of oil. Sprinkle pinch of turmeric powder over roasted ingredients, switch off the flame and allow them to cool down. Grind all the ingredients together to a fine powder. 

Meanwhile wash and clean the tomatoes, chop them into small cubes. Take the boiled dal in vessel, add slit green chili, 3-5 curry leaves and 3 cups of water. Bring it to boil. Now add chopped tomatoes and tamarind paste. As it starts to boil add the saarina pudi, jaggery as per taste, salt to taste and continue boiling it for another 5 mins on low flame. Switch off the flame. Heat ghee in a pan and prepare the seasoning with ingredients mentioned above. Pour the seasoning on the saaru and cover the vessel with a lid. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves, pour in a bowl/ glass and SLURRRPPPPP !

You may relish this saaru with hot steaming rice and a tsp of ghee over it. 

Happy cooking!


  1. very flavorful saaru.. All I want is some rice now.

  2. Comforting food, i can survive for many days with this fingerlicking saaru.