Bottle gourd dal step-by-step recipe with video and photos.
About this recipe
Bengali-style lau dal made with bottle gourd is so full of flavors and easy to make. Made with petite yellow lentils or moong dal, this lauki dal is absolute comfort food. Making this vegan yellow dal in Instant Pot is very easy. It is ready in less than 20 minutes, with just 5 minutes of hands-on time.
Bottle gourd (also known as long melon) is a vegetable that is used in a variety of Indian cooking, including curry, dal, and chutney. It is called lauki or doodhi in Hindi, sorekayi in Kannada, lau in Bengali, and sorakaya in Telugu. It has multiple health benefits, including high dietary fiber, rich in iron, and vitamin B and C.
This wholesome dal is a great way of including bottle gourd in your diet. I have earlier shared how to make South Indian-style ridge gourd dal. Here is my version of Bengali-style lauki dal. Read on for ingredients, step-by-step instructions, and tips on selecting a bottle gourd to make this comforting and nutritious vegan dahl in Instant Pot.
How to select bottle gourd
Bottle gourd or long melon is commonly available in Asian and Indian grocery stores. While the fresh ones work best for this dish, you can also use the frozen bottle gourd which is available in Indian grocery stores.
When selecting a fresh long melon, make sure the skin is smooth with no spots or blemishes. The skin of a good bottle gourd will be pale or light green. The seeds of the bottle gourd are edible and are tender if the bottle gourd is tender. As the bottle gourd matures, the seeds become hard and lose their taste.
Bottle gourd: This is the main ingredient in this dish.
Moong dal: I use moong dal (yellow lentils) to make this dish.
Spices: The spices I use here are cumin seeds, dry red chili, bay leaf, ground cumin, and ground turmeric.
Other ingredients: Ginger, green chili, cilantro, tomato, and lemon juice. I also add a very small amount of sugar. The sugar will not make this dish sweet but rather balance it really well.
Set the Instant Pot on saute mode. Add moong dal and dry roast it for 2 minutes (step 1).
Next, add oil, followed by cumin seeds, bay leaves, and dry red chili. Add the ginger, green chili, ground cumin, and ground turmeric (step 2).
Saute for one minute. Add the peeled and chopped bottle gourd (step 4).
Wash the dry roasted dal and add it along with tomatoes, salt, and sugar (step 5).
Add 5 cups of water and mix well. Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook mode on high pressure for 5 minutes (steps 6,7).
Do a natural pressure release for 10 minutes, then do a quick release. Open the lid. Add the lemon juice and cilantro (step 8).
Useful tips to make bottle gourd dal
Select a fresh and tender bottle gourd to make the dal. See the above section on how to select a bottle gourd.
You can make this dal on a stovetop pressure cooker. Follow this recipe and pressure cook for 2 whistles.
Click here to browse through my collection of Instant Pot lentil recipes.
Yes. It is very healthy and is known for its cooling effects. It has multiple health benefits, including high dietary fiber, rich in iron, and vitamin B and C.
Pair it with plain steamed rice and any curry of your choice. It can also be eaten on its own as a grain-free meal.
Yes. This dal can be frozen for up to three months. To reheat, transfer the dal to a saucepan with a small amount of water and simmer.
This vegan dhal is:
– absolute comfort food
– very easy to make and uses minimal spices
– ready in no time
Bottle Gourd Dal / Bengali Lau Dal (Instant Pot)
- 1 medium bottle gourd cut into cubes
- 1½ cup moong dal
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 bay leaf
- 1-2 dry red chilli
- 1-2 green chili or as per taste
- ½ inch ginger finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 large tomato chopped
- Salt to taste
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 2 tablespoon cilantro
- ½ lemon or lime
- 5 cups water
- Set the Instant Pot on saute mode. Add moong dal and dry roast it for 2 minutes. Take the roasted dal out of the pot and wash it well.
- Next, add oil to the IP inner pot and let it heat.
- Add cumin seeds, bay leaves, and dry red chili. Saute for a few seconds.
- Add the ginger, green chili, ground cumin, ground turmeric, salt, and sugar. Saute for one minute.
- Add the bottle gourd, dal, and tomato. Add 5 cups of water and mix well.
- Secure the IP lid. Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook mode on high pressure for 5 minutes.
- Do a natural pressure release for 10 minutes, then do a quick release.
- Open the lid. Add the lemon juice and cilantro. Serve hot with rice.