This is another simple, quick and easy recipe. Palak or Spinach is most cooked leafy vegetable in my kitchen and it is usually spinach fry. Mr. U doesn’t like mixing vegetables or pulses with it. Spinach dal is another very popular dish in any Telugu household but that is a rarity I my house. One day, I had some leftover fresh spinach in my fridge and I had enough curries for U. I wanted to use up the spinach and made this spinach dal. He loved it. This is more like stir fry than a liquid dal and it is not fried too much, like the stir fried spinach mung dal, which is also a very common dish in many households. I cooked spinach and dal just until tender and squeezed some lime juice over it.
I made this dal again for U, on the day I left to India. Between last minute shopping, packing and cooking, I forgot to not down the measurements and the recipe. All the ingredient measures mentioned below are approximate.
Total Time: 25 – 30 minutes
Preparation: 5 minutes (excludes soaking time)
Cooking Time: 20 – 25 minutes
- ⅛ – ⅙ cup Mung Dal / Pesaru Pappu / Green gram
- 1 – 2 tablespoon Oil
- ½ teaspoon Cumin
- 1 small Onion chopped
- 5 – 6 small Green Chilies split into two pieces
- 1-2 tablespoon crushed Garlic
- 1 teaspoon Salt (adjust to taste)
- ½ – 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric
- 6 oz. Baby Spinach chopped
- ½ Lime squeezed or 1 – 1 ½ tablespoon Lime Juice
- Wash and soak dal for an hour. If time is a constraint, soak the dal and go ahead with the preparation. Or microwave the dal for 3-4 minutes (I have not done it but I don’t see why you cannot do it). Soaking the dal for at least ½ hour or microwaving the dal for few minutes will reduce the cooking time by 5 – 10 minutes.
- Heat oil in a pan, cumin seeds and let the seeds turn light brown.
- Add onion and sauté till translucent.
- Add green chilies, garlic and fry for a minute.
- Add chili powder, salt, turmeric and fry for a few seconds.
- Add dal and fry for a minute. If the dal is soaked for an hour, as I did, you can add spinach right away. Otherwise, add a little water, cover and cook the dal for 3-5 minutes until dal is 80% tender.
- Then add spinach. Mix well, cover and cook for 3- 5 minutes until spinach wilts.
- Reduce the heat and cook until spinach and dal are tender. This should take about 5-10 minutes.
- Squeeze lime juice, taste the fry and adjust the seasoning.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and serve it with rice or roti.
This fry also goes to Priya’s Cooking with Seeds: Mung Beans