Rajasthan On A Thali: Dal, Bati, Aur Churma

The stories of Rajputana bravery and valour are compelling, and the regional cuisine of the desert state is alluring. At the DSSC Headquarters, the first half of October was spent bringing alive The Thali Tradition, India’s first celebration of the iconic thali, which had #OurCity asking for more. To keep the celebration going, we turned to the chefs at Mohan Mahal, the Indian specialty restaurant at JW Marriott Jaipur Resort & Spa and asked them part with their recipe of Dal, Bati and Churma, three quintessential dishes of a Rajasthani thali. Also, a part of their thali are the govind gattas, paneer dana methi, ker sangri, and papad mangodi ka saag.

 

Dal Panchmel

The nomenclature of this delicious dal is derived from its constituents — a combination of five dals — cooked with an assortment of spices. When had with the bati and churma, it makes for a wholesome meal.

 

Prep time: 1½  hours + 3 hours soaking time

Caters to: 2 gobblers

Challenge level: Intermediate

From the pantry:

  • 50 grams Moong dal split
  • 50 grams Urad dal split
  • 50 grams Chana dal
  • 50 grams Arhar Dal
  • 50 grams Masoor Dal
  • 2 teaspoons whole cumin seeds
  • 250 grams chopped garlic
  • 250 grams chopped onions
  • 250 grams chopped tomatoes
  • 100 grams chopped green chillies
  • 50 grams fresh coriander
  • 1 tablespoon ghee
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric powder
  • 1 ½ tablespoons coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoons deghi mirch                             
  • A pinch of asafoetida powder

Cook Away:

  1. Soak all the lentils for 3 hours and then boil them.
  2. Heat ghee in a kadhai. Add whole cumin seeds and stir till they crackle.
  3. Add chopped garlic and cook till golden brown.
  4. Add chopped onions and cook till light brown in colour. Add coriander powder, turmeric powder, and deghi mirch. Stir. Add asafoetida powder, chopped tomatoes, and green chillies. Cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add boiled lentils and cook them for an hour on slow fire.
  6. Finish with chopped green coriander.

 

Bati

Bati or whole wheat dumplings can be fried or baked. In Rajasthan, they are sometimes smoked over coal fire which gives them an earthy aroma. These simple wheat balls made using minimal ingredients make a complete nutritious meal when combined with panchmel dal and churma.

 

Prep time: 40 minutes

Caters to: 2 gobblers

Challenge level: Basic

From the pantry:

  • 1 kilogram whole wheat flour
  • 5 grams carom seeds
  • 30 grams salt
  • Desi ghee
  • Water to knead

Cook Away:

  1. Mix whole wheat flour, carom seeds, salt, and little desi ghee.
  2. Mix water and prepare the dough. Divide it into balls weighing 80 gm each.
  3. Heat desi ghee in a kadhai and deep fry the balls on slow flame till they turn golden brown in colour.
  4. Dip the balls in desi ghee for 20 minutes so that they can absorb the ghee.
  5. Serve hot with ghee, panchmel dal, and churma.

 

Churma

Churma, or sweetened and fried dough balls are mashed up and served as dessert with spicy panchmel dal and savoury batis. The awesome threesome reflect the best of traditional Rajasthani cuisine.

 

Prep time: 30 minutes

Caters to: 2 gobblers

Challenge level: Basic

From the pantry:

  • 200 grams whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon carom seeds
  • Salt to taste
  • Desi ghee for frying
  • 200 grams castor sugar
  • 5-7 green cardamoms

Cook Away:

  1. Mix whole wheat flour, carom seeds, salt and little desi ghee.
  2. Prepare a dough and divide it into balls of 80 grams each.
  3. Heat desi ghee in a kadhai and deep fry the balls on slow flame till the golden brown in colour.
  4. When cool grind them in the grinder.
  5. Mix desi ghee, sugar, and green cardamom in the mix.

 

Whip up a traditional gourmet feast this festive season.