Habisha Dalma (Kartik Masa Speciality from Odia Cuisine)

a no-onion-no-garlic dalma which is the trademark of kartik month in Odia Cuisine

What is Dalma ?

Odisha is one of the eastern state in Indian subcontinent. Among all the odia cuisine, the dalma dish is the most popular one. Well dalma is a curry prepared using lentils and some vegetables and finally a tempering is added. There are many variation of this curry depending upon the use of onion-garlic, different varieties of dals and vegetables. Without onion-garlic version is the preferable version in temple and during festivals. I have already shared some dalma recipes in my blog previously like Muga Dalma with Panasa Katha, Without onion-garlic dalma. Today I have come up with a different kind of dalma as Habisha Dalma which is particularly prepared during the Kartik month of Hindu calendar in each and every Odia households.

Kartik month specialty in Odia cuisine :

Kartik month is the most auspicious month among all 12 Hindu months. During this month most of odia people prefer to eat only vegetarian foods and particularly on each Monday of this month without onion-garlic foods are prepared. And the habisha dalma plays the vital role in most of the Monday lunch platters.

Difference between Habisha Dalma and a regular dalma :

This dalma varies totally different from rest others. Here onion, garlic, mustard oil, turmeric powder and potato are avoided in the ingredients list of the habisha dalma. Mostly the moong dal is picked up for preparing the dalma, but without roasting the moong dal. In this way (without roasting part of dal) the authenticity of the Habisha dalma is kept. Still anyone can use the roasted moong dal here if desired. One more authentic way here is the tempering part is followed at the beginning of the preparation unlike other dalma where the tempering is poured over the dalma after the dal and vegetables are cooked. During this month the elephant apple / oou is plentifully available in Odisha, so this sour vegetable is used in the habisha dalma to give a little tangy taste. But if this vegetable is not available at your place, then the tomatoes can be preferred.

Serving suggestion :

The consistency of the dalma depends upon individual choice like either thin / semi thick. The combo of simple steamed rice topped with ghee, the habisha dalma and some relish like oou khata, tomato khata is a pure bliss. As the Kartik month of Hindu calendar is going on, so this dalma I love to make in each Monday of this month. And this habisha dalma is purely gluten free and without onion & garlic. Not only along with steamed rice, also one can enjoy with paratha or poori too.

Recipe Card for ‘Habisha Dalma’ :

Moong dal, Kartik Month, dalma, No-onion-no-garlic dish

Dalma, Side dish, Gluten free, lentil



Habisha Dalma (Kartik Masa Speciality from Odia Cuisine)

Habisha Dalma (Kartik Masa Speciality from Odia Cuisine)

an Odia delicacy particularly during the Kartik month of Hindu calendar using moong dal and some selected vegetables.

prep time: 15 Mcook time: 15 Mtotal time: 30 M


  • Moong dal 1 cup
  • Elephant apple / oou (1 inch slice) 2-3 pieces
  • Pumpkin (cube shape) 1/2 cup
  • Raw banana (cube shape) 1/2 cup
  • Colocasia (cube shape) 1/4 cup
  • Ginger 1 inch
  • Cumin seed 1/2 tsp
  • Whole red chili 2 no.
  • Bay leaf 1-2 no.
  • Roasted cumin-red chili powder 1 tsp
  • Coconut (grated) 2 tbsp
  • Ghee 1 tbsp
  • Salt as needed


How to cook Habisha Dalma

  1. First wash and drain the moong dal. Keep aside.
  2. Next in a pressure cooker heat ghee.
  3. Put in red chilies, bay leaves and saute for 1 minute.
  4. Then add cumin seeds and allow to crackle.
  5. After that put the drained moong dal along with all the cut vegetables, crushed ginger, salt and 2-3 cup water.
  6. Mix everything using a spatula and cover the lid of the pressure cooker.
  7. Cook for 1-2 whistles or till all the vegetables are done well.
  8. Turn off heat.
  9. Allow the steam to escape automatically and till then keep aside the pressure cook.
  10. Next sprinkle grated coconut and roasted cumin-red chili powder and give a mix.
  11. Serve hot with rice topped with ghee, tomato khata / oou khata !!!


The moong dal is used here as raw, means this dal is added without roasting to maintain the authentic way of preparation. But if you want, then roast the moong dal first, then wash and use in the dalma.

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The event related to this post :

And this post is also related to Foodies Redoing Old Posts which is initiated by one of my fellow blogger Renu. The basic funda of this is to redo our old posts which need changes in picture, writings etc to get boost. Here I have modified the text and picture is kept same as before.

Also this ‘Habisha Dalma‘ is contributed for Healthy Wellthy Cuisines where the theme is Legume Affair at HW. Here are more similar recipes shared by our Healthy Wealthy Group members as Restaurant-Style Dal TadkaBoondi KadhiLehsuni Dal PalakHome-Made Peanut ButterMoong Dal KhichdiDhaba Style Kala Chana Baingan PakoraRajma MasalaDried Nightshade Berries Cooked In Tamarind.

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  1. mildly indian

    Dalma has been a bucket list recipe for me, in fact i have bookmarked a few more from your blog to do. I guess I will do this first, looks comforting

  2. Priya Iyer

    This looks so inviting!

    Dalma has been on my must-try list for the longest time ever. I'm surely going to try this out some time soon. 🙂

  3. spoonsofflavor

    Habisa Dalma looks so drool worthy.You have made this just perfect. Lovely share!

  4. My Flavour Tales

    Dalma is i the soul food in an Odia household . Habisa is my favourite . Your dalma looks super tempting . Just pipping hot rice and this soul food ..aha

  5. Poonam Bachhav

    It feels great to know about the different cuisines and I have learnt many Odia recipes from your blog. Dalma is next on my list.

  6. Swati

    Interesting recipe from your part of the world!! Like the use of so many vegetables along with Moong Dal.. The recipe sound delicious and lovely capture!!

  7. Kalyani

    This is such a new dish to me,Sasmita.. are u referring to Yam here (elephant foot?) .. very yummy dish..

    1. Sasmita

      No no Kalyani 🙂 Its Elephant apple (we call it Oou in Odia). you can get a little details information about this in my another post https://firsttimercook.com/2017/12/meetha-oou-khatta-sweet-elephant-apple-relish.html

  8. Shalu

    Such an interesting recipe. Something very new for me. It feels great to know about different cuisines. Absolutely delicious and nutritious share dear!!

  9. jayashree

    Good to know about this habisha dalma, it looks delicious. I must try it sometime.

  10. Mayuri Patel

    Kartik month for so many communities in India is an important month. We too try and avoid any onion and garlic in our food during this auspicious month. The Habisha dalma looks so wholesome and healthy, perfect with some rice and I would love to add ghee on top. Sasmita did you use green moong dal or the yellow one?

  11. Archana

    Kartik month is very important month with a lot of rituals in our community to. Great to see that we are not the only people who celebrate kartik. As for the dalma it sounds delicious and definitely healthy.

  12. cookwithrenu

    This bowl of dalma is looking so comforting and soothing. I can enjoy this as is, looks super tempting

  13. jayashree

    Habisha Dalma is new to me and looks interesting, I should try it sometime. Good to know about the Odia cuisine through your blog Sasmita.

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