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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Dhokar Dalna ( Bengali gravy )

This  Post is for Indian cooking challenge , For Jan month Srivalli had chosen this very traditional Bengali curry . I was so happy to make this as I wanted to make this curry from long time. Nabanita had challenge this delicious curry to south team members in SNC and wanted to try them since then but couldn't make it but Now here I am with this delicious curry. This is an very traditional bengali curry which is named "Dhokar Dalna" - Dhokar means Lentil cakes and Dalna means the gravy. This delicious curry is purely satvik with no onion and garlic used and a yummy option for vegetarians . This Curry is served with warm rice but we enjoyed them with hot phulkas , they tastes so delicious.

Dhokar dalna is lentil cakes which are deep fried and simmer in a curry with tomato base and flavored ginger, coriander , cumin. They are served with warm rice . The taste is so yummy as is that you will not miss the onion and garlic in them . Thanks to valli for suggesting this delicious curry for this month..

bengali recipes

Bengali gravy

Adapted from Sandeepa

For Dhoka or the Lentil Cakes

11/2 cup Cholar Dal/Chana Dal/Bengal Gram ( Soaked  in water overnight )
6 No Green chillies
Salt to taste
3/4 tsp Cumin seeds / Jeera
A pinch of Asafoetida
1 1/2 tsp Ginger paste
Oil to fry + 1 tbsp 

For gravy

1 No bay leaf
1/4 tsp Cumin seeds
A pinch of Asafoetida
1 No Tomato ( Chopped)
1 tsp Yogurt 
1 No Potato ( Chopped)
1/2 tsp Coriander pd 
1/2 tsp Cumin pd
1/2 tsp Red chiili pd
1/4 tsp Turmeric
1/4 tsp Garam masala
1/2 tsp Ghee
 2-3 tsp Oil 


  • Soak the channa dal for 3 - 4 hours / over night . Drain the water and grind the lentils  with  green chillies  and little salt
  • Grind them to a  fine paste. Add little water as required for grinding
  • Heat 1 tbsp Oil in a Kadhai, add Cumin seeds/Jeera, Asafoetida/Hing, and Ginger garlic paste.
  • Add the ground dal to this and cook until the mix continuously till the mixture comes out clean from the corners . 
  • The dal should be cooked in such away that it is moist and soft but not hard.
  • Note: You need to stir the vigorously else the dal paste will stick to the sides of the pan and  be careful to remove the moisture without making it hard. Add little oil as needed to avoid sticking.
  •  Grease a flat plate with oil and pour the soft dal mix on this. While it is warm, pat lightly with your hands to form a flat, slightly raised round structure ,With a knife make squares or diamond shapes
  • Heat some more Oil and fry the lentil cakes till golden brown on both sides. Take care while lifting the un fried lentil cakes as they might break.

To Make the Gravy

  • Heat Oil in a Kadhai / sauce pan fry  the 1 potato chopped in eights till golden, remove and keep aside.
  • In a another pan heat 3 tsp oil , add Bay leaf/Tej Patta, Cumin Seeds/Jeera and  Asafoetida/Hing
  • Add ginger paste , saute for a while .
  • Then add  finely chopped tomato . Saute till tomato is mushy and the raw smell goes off.
  • In  Yogurt  add  Coriander Powder,  Roasted cumin Powder(or Regular Cumin Powder), Red Chili Powder
  • and  turmeric to make a fine smooth mixture.
  • Add this yogurt mixture to the sauted tomatoes. and fry the masala at low flame
  • Add the fried potatoes and about 11/2 cups of water. 
  • Add salt to taste and cover and cook till potatoes are done.
  • Adjust the masala as needed, add a little sugar. 
  • Add about  Garam Masala and Ghee and gently mix.
  • Now slowly slide in the pieces of dhoka or the fried lentil cakes. 
  • Simmer for couple of minutes to let the dhoka get soaked up the gravy. 
  • Note:If your dhokas are cracking do not add them to the gravy, rather place them on the serving dish and pour the gravy on them.
  • Serve with hot white rice or roti.


  1. dalna looks mouthwatering manju.Send me some .

  2. That looks soooo delicious Manjula.. I couldn't believe that it was satwik food.. Yummz

  3. Would try it with baked ones. Not a big fan og curd based gravy, so option?

    1. there is only 1 tsp of curd used so you can skip the curd .. It is mainly tomato based

  4. Wow, Doker Dalna nice name. have not even heard about this dish. But a very different dish for vegetarians. Can say this dish must be a treat for vegetarians.

  5. Looks really very delicious and very tempting..

  6. Dalna looks so delicious...

  7. oh such a droolworthy recipe,....

  8. This is new to me, looks so delicious!

  9. Wow such beautiful pictures manjula!..very well presented!

  10. Yummy dear and this is in my to do list too

  11. The gravy looks very tempting!! Loved the pics...

  12. one lipsmacking gravy dear, super yum... will try this soon...

  13. awesome subji da, love the neat and bright click semma vella seiyuthu unn camera :) love it...


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