Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Keerai Kootu (Spinach in Lentil Gravy)
This is basically just a quick and delicious dish that you can make with fresh or frozen spinach. Great for those days when you really don't feel like doing anything, but still want a tasty and healthy dinner!
Spinach, fresh - 1 medium bunch (or a 10 oz package of frozen spinach)
Onion - 1 medium, chopped
Tomato - 1 large, chopped
Green chillies - 7,or to taste, slit in halt vertically
Moong dal (paasi paruppu) - 1/2 cup
Cumin powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Urad dal - 1 tsp (optional)
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Whole red chilly - 1 (whole or broken in 1/2 for more spice)
1. Wash moong dal and place in pressure cooker along with onions, tomatoes, green chillies, turmeric powder, water and a pinch of cumin powder. Do not keep too much water or the resulting kootu will be watery.
2. Pressure cook for 2 whistles. Let pressure release and open cooker. If a lot of water remains, evaporate some of the liquid (place on medium high heat for a few minutes) before adding spinach.
3. Now, add spinach, cumin powder, and salt. Cook until spinach is cooked and kootu has thickened. Try not to let the spinach lose its vibrant green color.
4. Do the seasoning and add to the kootu. Let it come to a boil and then turn the heat off.
5. Serve with piping hot white rice, pickle, papadam, ghee and enjoy! :)
Note: I normally go a little heavier on the spinach, but this was all I had the day I made this dish. If you're like me, you can put up to 2 bunches of spinach or a 16 oz bag of frozen spinach!