Zucchini Daal Fry

This year I experimented with growing Zucchini and yellow squash in containers.  I planted the black hybrid beauty variety of zucchini in a 10 gallon container.  Many of you might have seen my video on instagram where I was harvesting from that plant.  The black beauty variety is a good variety and produces well.  The container gardening was a success.   But we got a week of low temperatures at night in Mid August and it killed my plant.  Luckily I had a back up zucchini on my vegetable bed on the ground and it survived the cold.  The nights are getting cooler now and slowly these plants are going to stop producing.  I liked container gardening because it gave me more room to plant more vegetables and it was easy to move them around per their growth.

I have been using the tender zucchinis from my garden in all possible ways I could.   I use them in Keralite dishes too.   Recently I have been adding them to daal fry and they came out delicious.  Hence sharing this recipe with you.  It pairs really well with plain basmati rice and roti.  You can adjust the amount of water per your desired consistency.  I like thick daal fry, so I have used only 2-3 cups of water all together.  Give this simple recipe a try and see if you like it.

Serves - 8


1/2 cup - Toor daal

1/2 cup - Masoor daal

2 cups - water

1/4 tsp - turmeric powder

salt to taste

Other Ingredients

1 cup - fresh zucchini cubed

1 cup - onion chopped

1 tsp - garlic chopped

1/2 tsp - ginger chopped

3 - green chili splits

1/2 cup - chopped ripe tomatoes (a small tomato)

1/2 tsp - chili powder

1 tsp - coriander powder

1/2 tsp - turmeric powder

1/2 tsp - cumin seeds

1/2 tsp - Kasoori Methi (dry fenugreek leaves) 

2 tbsp - oil


1/2 tsp - garlic chopped

1/2 tsp - black mustard seeds

1/4 tsp - asafoetida powder

2 - dry red chili broken into pieces

1/4 cup - chopped Cilantro

2 tbsp - oil/ghee


  • Wash the Toor and Masoor daals few times till the water is clear.
  • Add the daal, 2 cups of water, salt and turmeric powder into a pressure cooker and cook till 2 whistle blows.  Let the pressure subside completely.  Alternatively you can cook the daal in a saucepan for 20-30 minutes till the daal is soft.  
  • In a separate pan, splutter cumin seeds in 2 tbsp of oil.  Add the chopped garlic & ginger and cook till golden yellow color.  Add the chopped onions, turmeric powder, salt and green chili to it and cook on low to medium heat till its sauteed well.
  • Lower the flame; add chili powder & coriander powder and cook for a minute.
  • Add the cubed zucchini pieces and saute for a minute.  Cover the lid and cook for couple of minutes till zucchini is cooked and slightly soft.
  • Once the zucchini is cooked, add the chopped tomatoes and cook till its soft.
  • Add the cooked daal to this.  Mix well and add 1/2 - 1 cup of water as per your desired consistency.  Let the daal zucchini mix boil for good 2 minutes.  Adjust the salt.   Rub the kasoori methi between your palms and add it to the daal.  Cook it for 30 seconds and turn off the flame.
  • In a small pan prepare the tadka by spluttering mustard seeds in 2 tbsp oil/ghee.  Add the chopped garlic and cook till its golden brown.  Lower the flame; add dry chili pieces and asafoetida powder and cook for 30 seconds.  Turn off the flame and pour the tadka over the Zucchini daal   Garnish with fresh chopped Cilantro.
  • Serve the Zucchini Daal fry with plain white Basmati rice or Roti/Chapathi.


  • You can use either Masoor daal or Toor daal per the availability instead of taking half and half proportions.
  • You can get Asafoetida powder at Indian stores.
  • Don't miss to add the tadka (fried garnish) and Kasoori Methi (dry fenugreek leaves) to the daal fry.  This adds the extra flavor to the dish.

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