#30daysofdaal has me spending sleepless nights. I am wondering what the last few recipes should be. Seems like all the more elaborate and tough recipes have been kept aside until the last moment. So this week I made Dalma and Daal Makhni, which take a little bit more love than the simple dal tadka.
Sindhi cuisine is something I don’t know much about. The Dal Pakwan is much talked about and based on the name, I thought this must be some dessert made from daal. ‘Pakwan’ in Hindi literally means delicacy. And it is also used to refer to special or festival foods. But I was surprised to learn that the pakwan here actually refers to a kind of puri.
The puri or pakwan is crispy, more like farsi puri or mathri I think, rather than the soft and fluffy poori we know. This is a breakfast recipe and is quite a heavy one.
The daal is made with chana daal and is simply spiced with cumin seeds, curry leaves and green chili. I was surprised to find curry leaves in this recipe but almost every recipe I referred to had them and luckily I had some in the fridge. But I still think it can be optional.
Chana daal is heavy on the tummy and has a meaty texture. I did not soak the daal, just pressure cooked it and it still remained separate but was soft when pressed. I simmered the daal for 15-20 minutes and I think that is a nice method because then you can control how far you should take it. Most recipes I read cautioned against overcooking the daal or making it smooth.
The Pakwan or poori is made with Maida or AP Flour. I used a mixture of wheat and maida, and a good amount of oil. You can use oil/ ghee combinations but I have used oil throughout the recipe making it completely vegan.
The daal is served garnished with chopped raw onion, sweet tamarind chutney, tomatoes, cilantro etc. I did not use any tomato today.
Although this is a lot of work – I generally don’t like the process of deep frying – but I thought it was worth the effort for #30daysofdaal.
Hope you enjoy this Sindhi Daal Pakwan.
Sindhi Daal Pakwan Recipe
- 1 cup chana daal or split chickpea
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 dry red chili/ 1 green chili
- ½ cup onion chopped
- 4-5 curry leaves
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 2 Tbsp oil
- Pinch of hing
- ½ tsp amchur or dry mango powder
- Salt to taste
- 1 cup wheat flour
- 1 cup All purpose flour
- 4 Tbsp oil
- ½ tsp ajwain or carom seeds
- Oil for deep frying
- Onion for garnish
- Tamarind chutney for garnish
- Pressure cook chana daal with turmeric for 2-3 whistles.
- Heat oil in a wok. Add cumin seeds, hing, chili, curry leaves and onions in rapid succession. Fry for 2-3 minutes.
- Transfer the onion mixture to the daal, check level of water and bring to a boil.
- Simmer until soft and creamy but you still see some whole ‘daal’ bits.
- Season and switch off heat.
- For the dough – knead a stiff dough and roll out pooris. You can cut them with a ring mould or inverted katori to get the same size.
- Pierce the pooris with a fork or knife so that they don’t puff up when you fry them.
- Deep fry and set aside.
- Serve Dal and pakwan with raw onions and tamarind chutney on the side.
I hope my Sindhi friends can give some feedback here since this is the first time I am making this. I have also not eaten this in any restaurant so hard to know if I got it right. Enjoy!