When life gives you a lemon, make lemonade, said somebody. Groovy! But what does one do when given a soaked cup of Toor daal? This was my quandary one weekday evening after getting back from work, when I found myself staring at soaked Toor daal, when I thought I had soaked Chana daal earlier in the morning that day to do God-knows-what.

“Serves you right, for placing the Toor daal jar right next to the Chana daal, anybody in the right mind would be confused” said the inner voice.

“Yeah right! I have hundreds of chores to finish before setting foot out of home, not to mention handling toddler tantrums, feeding, cooking etc etc” I pitched in.

“Ah! There she goes on the defensive again, anyway that is my theory and I am sticking to it” the inner voice said adamantly.

“Never mind the nuances. Let us move on and find out what to do with this. We already have lots of daal, so making sambhar/rasam is out of question. Also I want something quick, healthy and more like a side-dish that even the kid can eat” I pestered.

“How about making that steamed dish with soaked daal that has onions and dill?” the inner voice suggested.

Bingo! Now you are talking business. Let’s get right to it”.

steam_toor_cake 004

This is my contribution to the event Jihva for Ingredients:Toor Daal hosted by the wonderful Linda of Out of The Garden.


  • 1 cup toor daal (Chana daal can be used as well)

  • 1 medium onion

  • 2 cup fresh dill (substitute with coriander leaves if dill not available)

  • 2 green chillies

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • turmeric

  • Jeera

  • Salt to taste


  • Soak the toor daal in enough water for about 5-6 hours.

  • Chop the onions into small pieces and keep aside.

  • Clean the Dill leaves and chop into fine pieces.


steam_toor_cake 021



  • Drain the water completely from the soaked daal.

  • Grind the toor daal, along with green chillies, garlic, turmeric, salt and jeera (cumin) to a coarse consistency.

  • No need to add extra water as it will turn into a paste.

  • Make sure that the salt and the chillies taste is correct. Go a tad bit higher on the salt and chillies, as it tends to get bland after it is steamed.

  • Add the diced onions and chopped dill leaves and mix well.

  • Heat a pressure cooker with enough water.

  • Grease a container and pour the toor daal mixture into it.

  • Place in the pressure cooker. Steam cook for about 12-15 minutes without the whistle.

 Cool before serving. This can be used as a yummy side dish or can be eaten as is.  


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