Dal recipe with drumstick | Kerala Parippu Muringakka curry

Dal with Drumstick Curry
Yields: 6 Servings Difficulty: Easy Prep Time: 15 Mins Cook Time: 25 Mins Total Time: 40 Mins

This dal recipe with drumstick, from Kerala (a lush green state from the South India), tastes delicious. We call Dal as ‘Parippu’ in the local language. You can use Tuvar Dal or Moog dal to make this Dal recipe, along with fresh drumsticks.

Traditionally, we use fresh coconut in this dal recipe. You can substitute it with creamy coconut milk too, which is readily available. You can make this dal recipe without using the drumsticks too, if you don’t have it. It will still taste good!

A tempering made in coconut oil, gives it an authentic flavor.  Mustard seeds, shallots, aromatic curry leaves, dried red chillies and some more roughly crushed and roasted garlic go into this tempering. All this adds to its heavenly taste.

And surely add a spoonful of ghee (clarified butter), when you serve it!

Try this dal with drumstick recipe, in Kerala style, when you need a change from the regular ‘dal tadka’ (tempered dal) or ‘dal fry’. We call it ‘Parippu curry’ in the local language.

I prepare this very often in my home, especially for every ‘Onasadya’.

For those who wish to know, ‘Onasadya’ is the traditional vegetarian feast prepared for Onam – the harvest festival of Kerala :). It is one of the tasty gravies that is served among on a banana leaf, among almost 25 to 30 other dishes for this grand feast!

The best part is that it’s quite simple to make, needs very few ingredients, and is a time saver. You can find this lentil in Indian grocery stores easily, if you reside outside India.

This yellow colored lentil is known by different names such as :

  • Split Pigeon Peas (or Split Peas) in English
  • Tuvar Dal (or Toor Dal, Tur Dal)
  • Arhar Dal

You can also check the images that I have provided for a quick reference 🙂

How you can make this Dal :

For the most part, I make this curry using yellow lentils, preferably ‘tuvar’ dal. You can pressure cook this dal, and then add to it a paste made of coconut, cumin seeds and some garlic. At this point, you add in the cooked drumstick pieces to the dal.

Once the flavors have come together, I add an aromatic tempering to the dal, made by spluttering some robust mustard seeds, and frying shallots, fresh curry leaves, dried red chillies, some more crushed and roasted garlic and some red chilly powder for colour and spice.

And yes, I did add some dry mango powder to it for that wonderful tangy touch.

That’s all. It is that simple. But great on taste. A perfect comfort food. And did I forget to mention that this dal recipe with drumsticks, is also healthy for you?

What you can have it with :

It goes well with simple steamed rice and some stir fried veggies on the side. Try it with this Long Beans Stir fry (Achinga Payar Mezhukupuratti) or Cabbage Stir Fry (also known as Cabbage Thoran).

Have it with some papad (crispy fried flatbread made of urad dal – another variety of lentils). A classic combination. Or enjoy it with some thick home-made curd and lemon pickle (I am drooling already.).

You can also try this Inji Puli (a sweet-spicy tamarind infused Ginger pickle) to go along with some dal curry and a plate of hot steaming rice. It’s simply delicious!

This time round, I made some tasty beetroot stir fry to have with this dal and a plate of brown rice. My kids loved it!

Other stir fries that you can easily make as a combination with this dal recipe are :

Raw Banana Stir Fry (Pacha Kaya Mezhukupuratti)

Ladies Finger / Okra Fry (Vendekka Mezhukupuratti)

Do try this dal recipe.  And if you liked it, please share this recipe with your family members and friends.

Also, do share your experience with me in the comments section below. I would love to know if you tried this dal recipe using any other kind of lentils and how it went for you.

Some other authentic Kerala recipes from my kitchen are :

Raw Mango curry (Pacha Manga curry)

Pumpkin Curry (Erissery)

Moru Kachiyathu (Indian Buttermilk curry)



0/15 Ingredients
Adjust Servings
    To Cook in pressure cooker:
  • To Cook separately:
  • For Grinding:
  • For Tempering:
  • Other


0/12 Instructions
  • This is the yellow lentil that we will make the Dal curry with. It is called 'Split pigeon peas' or 'Tuvar Dal'.
  • Put the lentil in a pressure cooker. Add in enough water to cover the dal by around and inch or so, over the dal. Add in the turmeric powder. You can add salt either now or after it is cooked.
  • Close the pressure cooker, with its rubber ring inside, and the whistle on it. Cook the Dal on medium flame till 2 whistles go off. Switch it off and allow the cooker to cool and release pressure. Leave it closed till then.
  • While the dal is cooking, clean and chop drumsticks into around 1 and a half inch pieces as shown. Add enough water to cover them about half and inch over it. Add a little salt to it. Boil till it is cooked.
  • Meanwhile, while the dal and drumsticks are being cooked, we will make a paste of coconut, cumin and a some garlic pods. Put the ingredients for grinding into a grinder.
  • Make a smooth paste by adding water a little at a time. Do not add all the water at once. I used around 1 and a half cup to make this paste.
  • Now, open the pressure cooker and add in the cooked drumsticks to it.
  • Add the prepared coconut paste to the cooked dal and drumsticks.
  • Add in the mango powder (aamchur powder) to it, according to how tangy you would like the dal curry to be.
  • Mix the dal well, so that all the flavors merge together well. At this point adjust salt again, according to your taste. You can also add a little hot water if you want the curry to be a little looser. Cook it for a couple of minutes on medium heat or till it is hot, but do not allow it to boil. Switch off the flame.
  • Now, to prepare the tempering, in a separate pan, pour in some coconut oil. Turn on the flame to medium. Allow it to become hot. Once it is hot enough, add in mustard seeds. Allow it to splutter. Then add in curry leaves, dried red chillies and some more roughly crushed garlic. Saute till the rawness of the garlic is not there any more. Finally, reduce the flame to low and add in a little mild chilly powder, to add spice and color. Take care not to burn the chilly powder. Saute this for a few seconds, till the rawness of the chilly powder is not there anymore. Switch off the flame.
  • Add the prepared tempering to the cooked dal. Close the lid of the cooker. After a couple of minutes, open it and stir it well. This allows the flavors of the tempering to merge well into the curry. Allow it to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Serve hot with rice or chapatti and some pickles or curd. Enjoy :)


  • You can substitute Split pigeon peas (Tuvar Dal) with Moog Dal too.
  • The dal will get thicker as it sits. You can freeze for later use. Allow to defrost before heating.
  • To loosen the dal while warming it up, you may add some water and adjust the thickness.
  • You can also substitute red chilly powder with green chillies too. Either sauté them along with the tempering or add them to the dal at any stage of cooking.
  • In warm weather, do not leave the dal out for too long, since it might get spoilt due to addition of coconut paste.

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