Dal Bhat- the most popular meal in Nepal

Dal Bhat literally means “steamed rice (bhat) with cooked lentil soup (dal)” and is a staple meal of Nepal.

Did you know that Nepalese people eat Dal Bhat twice a day? 

Everyone has tasted and loved Dal Bhat. Haven’t you?

Dal Bhat is served with seasonal vegetable curries, papadum, pickles, curds, greens (sak), and meat curry (buffalo, chicken, or mutton) in a metal tray.

From the busy streets of Kathmandu to the Himalayas’ rugged trail, Dal Bhat is ubiquitous. If you are thinking of trekking in Nepal, it will be your favorite meal.

It is delicious and healthy. You must have heard an adage- Dal Bhat Power 24 Hour. It means Dal Bhat generates energy and strength for your day.

A Sherpa who climbs Everest in the Himalayas or a local people in Kathmandu, everyone savors it twice every day.

If you are in Nepal, your body will crave for Dal Bhat for your adventure to the Himalayas.

It is considered one of the healthiest dishes and well-balanced meal as it contains all nutrients (carbs, protein, fluid, vitamins, and minerals) needed for a healthy body. And I cannot agree more.

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Dal Bhat Ingredients (to cook)

  • lentil (red, black, yellow or mixed)
  • rice
  • vegetable oil
  • onion
  • garlic
  • cardamom powder
  • turmeric powder
  • cumin seeds
  • coriander leaf
  • tomatoes
  • butter or ghee
  • salt

How to cook Dal Bhat

Cooking Dal

You can use red, black, yellow, or mixed dal. Let’s cook mixed dal. First, you need to wash the dal and soak for an hour ( 15 minutes to half an hour). Also, wash coriander leaf, onion, garlic, and tomato.

Heat oil in a large pan or pot and, in the meantime, chop tomato, garlic, and onion to fine pieces. After a few minutes, put chopped tomato, garlic, and onion in the pan and stir it. (Make sure they are not over-heated.) 

Now comes the easy part- mix cumin seed, turmeric powder, salt, cardamom powder, and coriander, and stir it up. And what’s next?- you know it- add it in the hot frying pan.

And now, add the washed dal in the pan, and add water. 

Add butter if you like to, and let it cook for a few minutes. 

Finally, stir it, and it will be ready in about 10 minutes. Taste it and adjust any seasoning if necessary.

Cooking Bhat

Let me tell you, cooking Bhat is easy. All you need to do is wash, rinse, and cook it.

First and foremost, wash and rinse rice. And put it on to cook, either use a rice cooker or pressure cooker (most Nepali uses pressure cooker). Wait for at least 7-8 minutes if cooking in a pressure cooker and 15 minutes if a rice cooker is used.

Note: Add adequate water- no more, no less!

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