How to make Dahl

Published on July 10th 2021 by Rachael Ottier Hart.
Last updated on April 1st 2024
This recipe, developed through the collective effort of at least six experts, underwent meticulous research and testing for over three months. Learn more about our process in the art and science behind our recipes. This post may contain affiliate links. Read our Disclosure Policy.
Front shot of Trinidad Dhal in a pot

As many people know, Trinidad is a melting pot of various cultural influences, and Dahl is one such dish that has traveled from the Indian subcontinent. In India, Dahl describes peas, beans, legumes in general, and this particular dish. It is known for its rich yellow color from the yellow split peas and the earthy turmeric root used in the cooking process. As we all know, Indian cuisine would not be without its spices or special cooking techniques to enhance those rich and aromatic flavors, so be ready to learn how to CHUNKAY your Dahl with this recipe. Now to make this a genuinely Indo Caribbean pot, we are also going to add our homemade Green Seasoning to add a little more depth of flavor. For all you Spice Lords and Heat Seekers, there is a way for you to get that kick you are looking for with this dish, too. This dish is also a great comfort food that warms the soul with every bite, so what are you waiting for? 

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Time & Serves

Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
60 mins
Total Time
75 mins
Serves
12

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Yellow Split Peas dried

  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda

  • Water for soaking and boiling (tap or room temperature)

  • 1 small piece of Fresh Turmeric

  • 9 Cloves Garlic - 8 whole & 1 minced

  • 1 tablespoon Green Seasoning

  • 2 teaspoons Geera Seeds (Cumin)

  • 3 tablespoons Coconut Oil

  • Salt and Black Pepper to taste

  • Optional: Scotch Bonnet Pepper

Instructions

In a large bowl, allow the peas to soak overnight in a water solution and 1 teaspoon of baking soda, making sure the water line is 2-3 inches above the peas. This soaking process is unnecessary; however, it will help decrease the cooking time and reduce flatulence and bloating.

Thoroughly rinse the peas washing and draining at least three times to remove all the remaining baking soda.

Using a large stockpot, add the peas and enough water to have a 2-3 inches water line above the peas. Turn the heat to high and boil for 30 minutes.

While the peas boil, use a slotted spoon to remove the foam that appears on the surface.

With the back of a knife, rub off the skin on the turmeric root and give a rough chop.

After 30, add the turmeric, 8 cloves of garlic, and green seasoning, and continue to boil for another 30 minutes on medium heat.

Once the peas begin to break apart, turn off the heat and allow to cool for about 20 minutes.

Using an immersion blender or a standing blender, blend the ingredients to create a puréed texture.

After the mixture is thoroughly blended, observe the water levels to determine your preferred consistency. Then, add water to thin or continue cooking to thicken.

Return the mixture to the pot season with salt and pepper to taste, and warm on low heat to keep warm.

While the mix is keeping warm. Use a small saute pan, add the 3 tablespoons of oil and place it on medium to high heat for 2-3 minutes.

Once the oil is hot, add the geera/ cumin seeds and the minced clove of garlic, cooking them for 2-3 minutes.

When the garlic starts to turn brown, quickly remove it from the heat before they burn. Time to Chunkay the Dhal!

Using an arm's length distance from the pot of Dhal (or use a baking sheet as a shield), slowly pour in the hot oil, geera, and garlic mixture and stir.

Remove from the heat and allow the cooling process to begin before serving.

SPICY OPTION: After stirring in the ingredients in step 6, place the whole scotch bonnet pepper into the mixture and allow to boil and remove before step 8. This will add some heat and spice but do NOT allow the pepper to burst or be blended into the mixture, or it will significantly increase the heat.

Rachael Ottier Hart
Author:

Join Rachael on a global culinary journey. With a passion for travel and diverse cuisines, she crafts recipes that weave flavors, scents, and stories into each dish, igniting your wanderlust with every bite.

More posts by Rachael Ottier Hart

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Keywords
Trinidad Dahl, Trini Dahl, Caribbean Dahl, Yellow Split Peas, Yellow Split Pea Soup, Yellow Split Pea Porridge

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Rachael Ottier Hart
Author:

Join Rachael on a global culinary journey. With a passion for travel and diverse cuisines, she crafts recipes that weave flavors, scents, and stories into each dish, igniting your wanderlust with every bite.

More posts by Rachael Ottier Hart