Pappus (dals) and charus (rasams)

There are so many variations really, of dals, varying from– hand to hand, family to family, and between communities. Nothing here is sacrosanct: by definition, these recipes are dynamic, living, changing. You can have them dry-and-pulpy or dry-and-grainy or thin-and-watery. And you can make them with any number of flavours. And there are different dals (not only different dishes of dal, but different lentils/ dals, the  pulses) . The key thing to know is how long each of these pulses takes to cook, and a little about the taste of each dal and what spices it seems to like. My mother never put ginger with pesar pappu (moong dal) for instance, only garlic. But kandi pappu (tuvar or toor dal) seems to take ginger and garlic very well. I am pretty sure you can get the exact opposite advice in other parts of the country!