Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Puy Lentils and Swiss Chard Daal

Almost in every Indian kitchens you'll find it whistling away with the sound of pressure cookers, maybe early in the mornings, in the afternoons or in the evenings, and surely you can bet that almost 90% pressure cookers are cooking away the quintessential daal - flavourful, simple and packed with nutrients and one is sure to get an amalgamation of delicious taste with wholesome goodness.

Daal ( lentil soup ) is synonymous with Indians. We 'the Indians' are famous for our daal's as lentils form an important part of any Indian meal preparations and they are a tasty way to get your protein of the day, especially when you are a pure vegetarian. Even, non-vegetarian people don't miss out on their dose of daal now and then as it tastes great but is amazingly simple to make! Simple or elaborate cooked daals can be seen in everyday meal or even huge parties, it's a lifeline of a regular indian platter.

There is a variety of types of lentils and beans used and different style they are made in. India is a huge country, means in every corner of the country you'll find different type of tastes, textures and recipes of daals. When you get used to with different flavours and tastes you are spoilt for choice, which means you will never ever get bored and you'll have different daal every day !

In every Gujju kitchen five out of seven days you will find Gujarati Daal in our thali, most Gujju families are fond of this daal, then maybe sometime chanadaal, Moongdaal or desi chana (black chana ) can be seen. Many Gujju families were reluctant to use Rajma ( red kidney beans ), Masoor and whole Urad daal few decades ago, however sometimes I ventured in making Rajma, Chole ( chickpea curry ) and Daal Makhni ( whole Matpe beans curry ) in my teenage days, which resulted in getting told off or maybe one slap by my Mum, maybe I used to spoil the dish or simply someone doesn't wanted to accept the new taste. Nonetheless, I never quit taking a crash course to crack the art of cooking Daal and indulging them. 

When I got married and settled down with my own family, my horizon broaden in many aspects of my life, especially in cooking as every member of my family never shy away in experiencing new dish or taste, Blessings for me ! I get to know huge variety of beans and lentils which I never saw in India, Nyayo Beans from Kenya , Pinto Beans, Rosecoco beans (aka borlotti beans ) Cannellini beans, puy lentils from France, to name a few.

This cute clay pot was made by daughter when in chokhi dhani, India !

These international lentils and beans are a regular stock along with many Indian beans and lentils and I make good use all the traditional recipes of Indian daal and beans and create a few recipes with beans and lentils which I find them here to make a fusion dishes to suit my cooking and taste.

Puy lentils (aka dark green or slate green speckled lentils ) and swiss chard daal, it's a remake version with little change of my recipe Trevti Daal with Spinach and Spinach Daal, replacing Spinach with Swiss Chard ( beetroot leaves ) and instead of regular lentils I've used Puy lentils. We absolutely love this version, brings so much satisfaction to our tummies, especially when cooked with Swiss Chard. There is just something about the creaminess of the lentils and strong taste of the swiss chard that makes me sing with joy whenever I put them together. 

Puy lentils and swiss chard daal
Yield: 4-6 servings

Puy Lentils and Swiss Chard Daal

Puy Lentils and Swiss Chard Daal

This delicious and tasty daal is our ultimate go to comfort food during rainy and cold days, easy to prepare, uses the most basic ingredients and doesn't take more than 30-40 minutes and so amazingly satisfying.
prep time: 30 Mcook time: 40 Mtotal time: 70 M


  • 250 g Puy Lentils
  • 250 g Swiss Chard
  • 3 tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1 Large tomato chopped
  • 4-5 Garlic cloves
  • 5-6 green chillies slit
  • 1 tsp. Cumin seeds
  • 1 Onion chopped
  • 1 tbsp. Ginger-Garlic paste
  • 1 tsp. Kasoori Methi - dried fenugreek leaves 
  • to taste Salt
  • 1 tsp. Curry Powder ( optional )
  • 1 tsp. Red Chilli Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Turmeric Powder
  • 2 tsp. Cumin and coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Garam Masala
  • Pinch Hing ( asafoetida )


How to cook Puy Lentils and Swiss Chard Daal

  1. Clean, wash and soak lentils in water for half an hour to one hour.
  2. Wash and roughly chop the swiss chard, tomato.
  3. Place lentils, swiss chard, tomato, garlic cloves, green chillies in a pressure cooker with 2 cups of water and cook till three whistles.
  4. Let the pressure cooker cool naturally.
  5. Open the pressure cooker lid and mush the lentil slightly with the back of the spoon or ladle.
  6. Heat oil in a heavy-based pan or kadai, add cumin seeds.
  7. As soon as they crackle add hing and chopped onion.
  8. Saute the onion till light pink, add ginger-garlic paste and cook further 2 minutes.
  9. Add kasoori methi, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, cumin and coriander powder and curry powder.
  10. Cook the mixture for few seconds and add cooked lentils.
  11. Mix everything, add salt and simmer the daal for 7-8 minutes or your desired consistency.
  12. Turn off the heat, garnish with fresh coriander and serve HOT with Roti, Rice and salad.
  13. Enjoy!


Whole brown Masoor can be used instead of Puy Lentils.
Mustard leaves, Amaranth or Spinach can be used instead of swiss chard.
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The nutritional information provided is an approximation calculated by an online calculator. Please consult a professional dietitian for nutritional advice.

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  1. I love the different international daal you have mentioned but they are just names to me. As for the daal it's delicious.

  2. Rightly said, even we never get bored of dal recipes... Such a comfort meal. This one is unique and healthy.

  3. Never seen these lentils.. I wonder if they are available in India. Daal looks too good. I am a great fan of dal prepared in any which way.


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