This is an easy Pakistani Chana Dal made in the Instant Pot (Pressure Cooker). Chana Dal (or Split Chickpeas) are cooked with spices and given a simple tadka for an easy dinner. Naturally gluten-free and Vegan optional.
Add all the ingredients listed under ‘To Pressure Cook’ to the Instant Pot and mix to combine.
Secure the lid and set valve to Sealing. Select the Manual/Pressure Cook setting and set time to 22 minutes (See Note 2) on High Pressure.
Once dal is cooked, allow pressure to release for 5 minutes, then manually release any remaining pressure.
In a medium sauté pan, heat oil and ghee over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the cumin seeds and allow them to sizzle for a few seconds. Add the onions and sauté until they turn golden (~5-6 minutes).
Select the Sauté setting on the Instant Pot and set to Less to heat the dal.
Add the garlic to the tarka and sauté until the raw smell disappears, about a minute. Add the green chili pepper and sauté for another minute.
Transfer the tadka to the dal in the Instant pot. Continue to simmer on low Sauté for 3-4 minutes, or until you reach the desired consistency. Use a wooden spoon to mash dal against the edges to enhance texture.
Cancel Sauté. Add the garam masala and lemon juice and give it a stir. Top with the cilantro and ginger. Serve alongside achaar and chopped crunchy vegetables.
Note 1: If you pre-soak the dal, pressure cook for 18-20 minutes depending on how long you soaked it.Note 2: Timing varies depending on the type/age of chana dal. If your dal is new, you may need to decrease pressure cook time by 8-10 minutes. If, after 22 minutes, the chana dal is still tough, cover and pressure cook again for 3-4 minutes.