Paruppu Podi (Lentil Powder)

Paruppu podi is one of mom’s staples in her kitchen. This is her recipe that I follow exactly.

Paruppu podi or dal (lentil) powder is a common item in south-indian households. This is yummy mixed with rice and with pickle or pulikachal (tamarind sauce) alongside. I love it with plain rice, curd rice, even as a side for tamarind rice. Mom also prepares another podi with horse gram (muthirai or kollu paruppu in tamil) – horse gram is considered nutritious as well – will post it whenever I make it.

It is a simple procedure for a tasty powder that stores well for long.



Moong dal (Green gram skinned and split): 1 cup

White sesame seeds (Til/Ellu): ¼ cup (or 4 tablespoons)

Dry red chilly: 2

Black pepper: 4

Salt to taste

Asafoetida powder (hing): a pinch

Oil: ½ teaspoon



  1. Heat the oil in a skillet/sauté pan (kadhai/wok). Reduce the heat to low. Add the moong dal and roast them. Constantly monitor and stir them to ensure that they toast evenly and don’t burn – they take about 4-5 minutes to roast. Transfer to a plate to cool when they are roasted and lightly browned.
  2. Next, in the remaining traces of oil, roast the red chilly and black pepper corns for about 30 seconds or so. When roasting these ingredients, ensure the kitchen is well-ventilated as they tend to make us cough. Transfer to a plate/bowl to cool.
  3. Then, dry roast the sesame seeds till they begin to pop and smell roasted – about 1-2 minutes. Turn off the heat. Transfer to a plate to cool.
  4. Set aside these ingredients to cool to room temperature.
  5. Once cooled, grind them to a coarse powder in a coffee/spice grinder or the chutney jar of a desi mixer grinder. Powder the dal, red chilly, and black pepper together.
  6. The sesame seeds (til) must be powdered separately as they would release oils and become mushy if powdered with dal.
  7. Transfer after grinding to a container/bowl. Now, add the salt and asafoetida powder and mix thoroughly.
  8. Store in a clean dry jar with an air-tight lid.
  9. To enjoy this powder, take about 2-3 teaspoons of the powder and add to cooked rice (plain rice). Add about a teaspoon of oil or so to mix the powder with the rice. You can use sesame (Til) oil or ghee for an extra rich taste for the mixed rice. This is yummy with pickle, papad, pulikachal (tamarind sauce) etc.
  10. You can freeze the powder to keep it fresh for about 3-4 months or so.

Note: Suggest roasting them separately as time required for the ingredients vary. If roasted together, the finer ingredients might char.


2 Responses to “Paruppu Podi (Lentil Powder)”

  1. I didnt know it is also made with moong dal..we always make it with tur dal…thanks for sharing this variation

    From skribles: Thanks EC – Oh is it – I have not tasted one with tur dal – will try tht one sometime 🙂

  2. I use a combination of urad, chana and tur dal to make paruppu podi. Proportion 1/2:2:1

    From skribles: Thanks Shyam – that sounds interesting ….

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