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Palakura Pappu Andhra Style served in a copper bucket.
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Palakura Pappu Andhra Style | Easy Spinach Dal | Palak dal South Indian Style

Palakura Pappu Andhra Style prepared with spinach, lentils and few spices is probably the most comforting and satisfying combo when paired with a bowl of hot rice and a dollop of ghee.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Pressure Cooker Recipe, Side Dish / Sambar, Side dish for main course
Cuisine: Indian (Andhra), Indian (South Indian)
Keyword: spinach, palakura, palakura pappu, spinach dal, palak dal, dal, comfort food, andhra pappu, aaku kura pappu, spinach pappu,
Servings: 5
Author: Padma Veeranki


  • 1 Cup Toor dal/ Pigeon peas Kandhi Pappu
  • ½ tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1 Medium Onion chopped
  • 3 green chillies slit lengthwise
  • 3 Cups Spinach Washed & Roughly chopped(tightly packed)
  • tsp Red Chilli Powder
  • Gooseberry size Tamarind
  • 1 Tomato Roughly chopped
  • ½ tsp Sugar
  • Salt to taste

For Tempering:

  • 2 tsp Oil or Ghee
  • 4 Garlic Pods Crushed or Chopped
  • ½ tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 2 Dry Red Chillies
  • ½ teaspoon Asafoetida
  • Few Curry Leaves


  • Wash lentils in the pressure cooker.
  • Add 2½ to 3 cups water, turmeric powder, chopped onions, slit green chillies and chopped spinach.
  • In a separate bowl, add tamarind, red chilli powder and roughly chopped tomato pieces.
  • Place this bowl with tomatoes over the spinach.
  • Close the lid and pressure cook for 3 whistles over high heat and then simmer to low for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat.
  • Open the pressure cooker once the pressure subsides.
  • Now mash up everything together. Add sugar, required salt and water to get the desired consistency.
  • Bring the contents to a boil over medium heat with constant stirring for 2 to 3 minutes and turn off the heat.
  • Transfer dal to a serving bowl.

For Tempering:

  • Heat oil or ghee in a small pan over medium heat. When oil is hot enough, add garlic. Once garlic starts to turn light brown add red chillies, mustard seeds and cumin seeds. When mustard seeds splutter, add a pinch of asafoetida. Turn off the heat and add curry leaves. Transfer the tempering to the dal and mix well.

Serving Suggestion:

Recipe Video


  • This recipe can be easily made with any type of greens.
  • Traditionally, we use for tamarind sourness, but you can replace it with lime juice. Add it towards the end after the dal cools down. Otherwise, you get a bitter taste.
  • Adjust spice levels with green chillies and red chilli powder to suit your taste.
  • Pressure-cooking dal saves time and retains nutrients.
  • Addition of sugar helps to balance out salt and sour flavours in a dish.
  • While cooking dal in a pressure cooker, do not bring tomatoes and tamarind (sour ingredients) in contact with lentils, otherwise the dal will not cook properly.