Bay Leaf Cardamom Vegetable Daal

Think Asian flavors like coconut milk and Siracha combined with North Indian flavors such as bay leaves and cardamom pods, combined with South Indian flavors such as mustard seeds and cumin seeds – this is a dish that combines all these flavors into one delectable lentil stew.  Ladled over steaming white rice with a squeeze of limejuice, this rather eclectic lentil daal is delicious and filling. 



This is a recipe that my sister Banu shared with me this past week when she visited me with her daughter Maya for a few days. On one of the evenings she offered to cook dinner for the family and made this delicious lentil dish. Creamy in color with tender lentils, lots of colorful vegetables and coconut milk, this is a mildly spiced stew that is as comforting as it gets. Our whole family absolutely loved it on a rainy cold March evening.

If you like lots of beautiful veggies, love coconut milk, and like something a little spicy, give this hearty lentil stew a try.


Bay Leaf Cardamom Infused Coconut Vegetable Daal
recipe contributed by my sister Banu
serves 6-8


  • 1 head of cauliflower cut into florets
  • 1 red bell pepper cut into cubes
  • 1 yellow bell pepper cut into cubes
  • 1 onion finely cut
  • 4-6 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 zucchini cut into cubes
  • 3 inch piece of ginger peeled and finely grated
  • 1 – 2  green chilies finely cut – seeds removed to keep if you want to keep it mild
  • 2 limes
  • Fresh cilantro for garnish


  • 2 -3 Bay leaves
  • 2-3 green Cardamom pods
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds

For the daal:

  • 1 15oz can coconut milk
  • 1 cup yellow split peas cooked with 3 cups water
  • 1/4 cup cashews dry roasted
  • Salt
  • Oil


  • Cook yellow split peas until tender.  Set aside.
  • In a large pot heat 3 tbsp oil. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cardamom pods, and bay leaves and toast in oil until you hear the mustard popping about 10-20 seconds. Add the onions, ginger and garlic. Sauté until onions are tender.
  • Next add all the vegetables and salt to taste. Cover the pot and cook until vegetables are tender a little, like al-dente – about 10 – 12 minutes.
  • While the veggies are cooking dry roast cashews and set aside.
  • To the vegetables add the cooked lentils and can of coconut milk and stir in. Bring the daal to a low boil.  Taste for salt and adjust accordingly.
  • Turn the stove off.  Add juice of 2 limes, roasted cashews and fresh cilantro.


  • Serve vegetable coconut daal over white rice with garnish of cashews and cilantro. To give it a bit of extra spice Banu recommends having it with a few drops of Siracha hot sauce.




A few pics of my sister and niece’s visit to the Bay Area.

Drove by Lexington Reservoir Saturday afternoon on the way back from David Bruce Winery in the Santa Cruz Mountains.



Celebrated the twins birthday with family and friends on Sunday with bocce ball.






Sister cooking up a delicious lentil stew on Monday.

Sis and niece checking out my winter veggie patch on Tuesday.

Took them both to lunch for the most delicious all-vegetarian South Indian Tamil food at restaurant Sangeetha in Sunnyvale.



Doesn’t this food look amazing? It was delicious 😋😋😋!


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Spent the afternoon in Santa Cruz with my beautiful niece Maya on Wednesday.








Grabbing hot chocolate with the twins before heading to the airport back to Philadelphia ☕️.


Happy Saturday Everyone!
Have a great weekend!



16 thoughts on “Bay Leaf Cardamom Vegetable Daal”

  1. Looks like a great party! Happy birthday to Rani & Anjali!
    Great pictures. The Dal looks yummy. Will try it.

  2. First, let me wish Dolly , Bon Bon, Meera , Uma M , Rushmi, Shobha etc etc a very Happy Women’s day . Our Bhanu is always an expert Dhal Maker … i recall when we had been to Philly around 2004 ( Jagan Athimber’s milestone Boirthday?), Bhanu made the ” Pancharanghi ” Dhall ( Five Lentil Varieties) … it was Out of this World … so delicious that i ate a whole Bowl of it . Bhanu looks more and more like Raji and so full of Divine Aura … Nurturing look . Pl take a look at my profile photo with Bhanu , Dolly and Dharini and Shobha from that event in 2004 … Lots of love and Hugs to all of Jagan’s Angels

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