Just like Channa Chaat, Dahi Baray are a quintessential snack/appetizer in Pakistani and Indian homes. Dahi Baray are basically lentil based dumplings that are soaked in a spiced yogurt mixture, and are served cold. Traditionally, lentils are soaked overnight and then pureed to form a batter the next day.
Me, using traditional methods? Yeah right!
Why would I use a harder method when an easier one is available? The lentils used in this recipe, Urad or black gram/matpe beans, can be found in any Indian or Pakistani grocery store in FLOUR FORM! Therefore, we don’t need to soak n’ grind! (And less dishes to wash 😉 )
Also, this recipe produces a large number of dumplings. What I like to do is use as many as I need and freeze the remaining. The frozen dumplings can be quickly thawed at room temperature, and are ready to go when you need them. I like to make a large batch especially during Ramadan, so iftar, or break-fast time, is easier and faster.
This recipe is also courtesy of my mother in-law, so it’s a guaranteed winner!
Pakistani Lentil Dumplings in Yogurt Sauce / Dahi Baray
Yogurt Mixture/ Dahi
- 3 parts yogurt
- 1 part water or milk
- Granulated sugar, to taste
- Salt, to taste
- Cumin powder, to taste
- Red chili powder, to taste
Lentil Fritters/ Baray
- 2 cups black matpe flour (urad flour)
- 2 green chilies (Serrano o or jalapeño), grated or minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- 2 cups water
- Neutral flavored oil, for deep frying
- Chaat masala
- Tamarind Chutney
- Cilantro, chopped, optional
- Onions, finely diced, optional
- Chickpeas, optional
Prepare Yogurt Mixture/Dahi:
Depending on how many fritters/Baray are being used, whisk together yogurt and sugar in a large bowl until completely smooth. Add water and whisk until a smooth. Add sugar, salt, cumin powder, and red chili powder as desired and mix well. Set aside.
Prepare Lentil Fritters
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, chilies, ginger garlic paste, garam masala, and baking powder in a large bowl. Slowly drizzle in water and whisk until smooth. Cover and let it set aside for 20 minutes (do not exceed 30 minutes).
Set aside a large bowl of lukewarm water.
Heat oil in a large vessel over medium heat. To check the temperature of the oil, drop a small amount of batter into the oil. The temperature is just right when a drop of the prepared batter is dropped in the oil and it starts bubbling and making its way upwards.
Stir the prepared batter, and drop heaped tablespoons into the oil. Cook until the fritters are evenly golden, about 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel lined tray. Cool slightly.
Transfer the fritters to the water and allow them to soak for a few minutes. Squeeze the water out of the fritters gently by using the palms of both hands, and arrange them in a serving dish.
Pour the prepared yogurt mixture over the fritters and garnish as desired. Allow the fritters to soak in the yogurt mixture for a few hours before serving.
Measurements are in actual measuring spoons/cups and not eating utensils.
Once cooled completely, the fritters can be stored in an airtight container and frozen to use at a later time. To use, leave desired amount out at room temperature. Once thawed, soak in lukewarm water and use as directed.