How To Make Varan (Maharashtrian Daal)



ToorDaal – 1 cup

Water – 3 cups

Ginger – 1 tsp, grated

Methi Seeds (Fenugreek) – 1/4 tsp

Green Chilies – 1 or 2 (to taste), slit length-wise

Onion – 1/2 medium, finely diced (optional)

Salt – ½ tsp (to taste)

Lemon Juice – ½ tsp (to taste)

Cilantro – 5 sprigs, chopped (for garnishing)

For Vagar (Seasoning):

Oil – 4 tsp

Jeera (Cumin Seeds) – ½ tsp

Haldi (Turmeric) – ¼ tsp

Hing (Asofoetida) – pinch

Curry Leaves – 1 sprig

Garlic – 5 large cloves, roughly smashed

Tomato – 1 medium, diced




  1. Wash Toor Daal with water until water runs clear.
  2. Add 3 cups of water to the Toor Daal and let it soak for about 15 minutes.
  3. In a pressure cooker, add soaked Toor Daal with Water, Ginger, Methi Seeds, Green Chilies, and Onion.
  4. Pressure cook for 3-4 whistles.
  5. In a separate small pan, heat Oil.
  6. Add Jeera and allow it to sputter.
  7. Add Haldi, Hing, Curry Leaves and Garlic.
  8. When Garlic is slightly brown, add tomatoes, stir and cook for 1 minute.
  9. Mix the garlic/tomato seasoning with pressure cooked daal.
  10. Add Salt and Lemon Juice to taste.
  11. Allow it to boil for 4-5 minutes.
  12. Garnish with Cilantro.
  13. Serves 4



  1. If you don’t have time to let the Toor Daal soak, just let the pressure cooker whistle 3-4 more times.
  2. If you like your daal with a thinner consistency, you can add more water at the end before you allow the daal to boil.
  3. Don’t overcook the Toor Daal. The texture of the daal should be seen.