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Sunday, August 18, 2013

Hara Moong Dal

My last moong episode was excellent, however, I did not get a good picture of it so it never saw the light of day on this blog.  A pity, really, but its because it was so good I scarfed it down like an animal and by the time I realized I hadn't photographed it correctly, it was gone.  Tonight, I inadvertantly invited some of my neighbors for dinner.  Yesterday, he said..I'd really like to eat something "strange," to which I responded...tomorrow I'm making something "strange," you should come see (okra).  I didn't realize that I was inviting him, but the more the merrier.
So to add to things French people aren't fully aware of, here is a reappearance of Whole Green Mung Daal by Indian Khana.
Serves 6 - 8 as a side, 4 - 5 as a meal
1 cup whole green mung, soaked overnight
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp oil
Pinch of asofetida (hing)
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 large onion, minced
4 slit green chilis (I only used 1)
1 tsp grated garlic
1 tsp grated ginger
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground coriander
Another 1/4 tsp turmeric
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 Tbsp dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi)
2 1/2 cups reserved cooking water, as needed
1 tsp garam masala
Salt as needed
Cilantro for garnish
1.  Cook the mung in 4 cups water and 1/4 tsp turmeric in the crock pot for 3-4 hours on low.  You want them to be cooked, but not mushy.  I could have done this stove top, but I wanted to be relatively hands free when my guests arrived and not have a cluttered stove.  After 3 hours, I did a taste test, then turned off the crockpot and removed as much of the cooking water possible, reserving it for later.
2.  Heat the oil in a wok.  Add the asofetida and cumin seeds until they crackle, then add the onion and chilis.  Stir and cook for 1 minute.
3.  Add the ginger and garlic and cook until the onion softens and the raw smell goes away.
4.  Add the chili powder, coriander, and the remaining turmeric and stir.
5.  Add the tomatoes and cook until everything becomes mushy and the oil separates from the flesh.
6.  Add the kasoori methi, stir, and breath in deeply.  Smells nice!  As I was enjoying the aromas in my house, I was interrupted by a very rude and unappreciated "what stinks?"  I happen to love when the whole house smells of fried and roasted spices.  No cookies for him.
7.  Stir the mixture into the mung along with the garam masala.  Add some of the reserved cooking water to get it to desired consistency.  Do a quick taste test and add salt if necessary.  I added just a little since there is already so much flavor.
8.  When the guests arrive, turn the crockpot on high while you have happy hour.  It should give the mix a good boil and heat it through.  Since it has all been sitting together, the flavors should have infused into the mung.  Mmm

I served this with Tandoori ChickenBhindi SubziJeera rice, and Naan.
This dal is the best mung dal recipe I've made so far.  I really enjoyed it and so did everyone else.  My neighbor looking for "strange" food got exactly what he wanted, and he even took seconds, which made me incredibly happy...even though I'll have less okra leftovers for myself tomorrow.
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