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Reply to "The Unique Use of Dals in Our Favourite Indian Desserts"

The way we use lentils in India is unique. Dals are an intrinsic part of the meal for vegetarians in almost all parts of the country, but they are also one of the most versatile ingredients of the Indian kitchen. As we all know, dals can make for delicious snacks and desserts too and across the country there is a whole genre of dishes - savouries and sweets fashioned out of pulses-that people eat not for sustenance but for recreation!

When you think of Indian desserts, it is difficult to imagine much of mithai without the presence of besan. Chickpea flour is essentially made from a local desi variety of chana, or gram, one of the oldest pulses known to mankind. In fact, the small desi kala chana closely resembles some of the earliest species of gram found at old sites. According to the venerable food historian KT Achaya, chana was found at the Indus Valley sites and the khalva in Yajurveda may refer to it. Chanaka also finds mention in early Buddhist writings.

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