Last Updated : Nov 02,2017
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Vicia faba, the vaal dal or Broad Bean, Fava Bean, Faba Bean, Field Bean, is a species of bean (Fabaceae) native to north Africa and southwest Asia, and extensively cultivated elsewhere. It is a rigid, erect plant 0.5-1.7 m tall, with stout stems with a square cross-section. The leaves are 10-25 cm long, pinnate with 2-7 leaflets, and of a distinct glaucous grey-green color. The fruit is a broad leathery pod, green maturing blackish-brown, with a densely downy surface; in the wild species, the pods are 5-10 cm long and 1 cm diameter. Each pod contains 3-8 seeds; round to oval in shape.
Soaked vaal- wash the vaal dal after cleaning it off the stones or pebbles.
Parboiled vaal- Parboiling is a cooking technique in which soaked vaal are partially cooked in boiling water, but removed before it is cooked all the way through. Many recipes call for parboiled vaal as they longer to cook. Parboiling them in advances ensures that they get completely cooked in the final dish.
How to select
Check the pre packaged vaal dal for their expiry date. They should be dust free and without stones and other debris.
" Vaal are generally prepared from dried beans by boiling until they are soft.They are then cooked as any other dal is cooked with onion, ginger, garlic and spices..
" Chop up two medium onions. Several cloves of garlic and several stalks of celery (chopped up) may also be added at the same time. In a frying pan on a low to medium heat, stir fry the veggies (spinach, gourd etc). Then add them to the fully cooked vaal. Add salt and pepper.
" Boiled and mashed vaal dal can be used as stuffings for karelas or capsicum.
" They can be stuffed in paranthas or added to soups and stews with meats or vegetables
" Soak the vaal dal and rice in enough water for 10 minutes. Drain and keep aside. Heat the ghee in a pressure cooker and add whole spices. Cook till the vaal becomes soft and you have a delectable vaal dal ni khichdi.
" Vaal dal pulao or vaal dal with spinach are also quite common.
" The beans can be fried, causing the skin to split open, and then salted and/or spiced to produce a savory crunchy snack. These are popular in China.
How to store
Store vaal dal in an air tight container.]
" Vaal like other lentils and pulses are good source of protein and dietary fibre.
" They are low in fat and rich in B complex vitamins, calcium and potassium
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