City Food – Yellow Dal, Karim’s
Simple but complicated.
[Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi]
It is startling to discover that the capital’s most delicious yellow dal is to be found at Karim’s, the Mughlai eatery famous for its non-vegetarian biryanis, kebabs and kormas.
The dal at Karim’s is not as straightforward as the one that mothers cook at home; it also doesn’t ape other restaurants and bow to the market forces by smothering its original self with tomatoes and a dozen other embellishments.
Instead, the dal is the culinary equivalent of Hemingway’s prose – spare, direct and yet complicated.
Unlike other specialities at Karim’s, this broth of moong and masoor lentils is free of spices and oil. Kept in a cauldron, it gently simmers all day on a low-flame burner, and is served to the customer after the cook tempers it with a hint of garlic.
Sprinkled with coriander leaves, the dal works on the palate with deceptive simplicity. The stomach remains light but the senses respond vigrously, as if they were expecting a stew of meat, ghee and masalas.
As the fellow diners make great sucking sounds licking off the bones of goats and chickens, you concentrate on a meal that caused no violence in its making.
Priced at Rs 60 per plate, the dal goes best with tandoori roti and dark green chillies.
Where There are many Karim’s outlets in Delhi but the best is in Old Delhi near Jama Masjid Nearest Metro Station Chawri Bazaar Time From noon to 1 am
Delhi’s most delicious yellow dal