Sri Lankan in its origins, this Mung Dal recipe from Jaffna is quick and lovely. The recipe is from that lovely cookbook of South Indian and Jaffna / Sri Lankan cooking – A Monk’s Cookbook by the monks from the Hindu Aadheenam on Kauai in Hawaii (you can download it here).
Mung in all of its forms is a favourite of ours – whole beans, split dal, hulled or unhulled. The gentleness of its texture and flavour always makes one feel loved and nourished. With a flavour that is just a little on the sweet side, even hardened lentil-haters will love Mung.
Mung Dal with Coconut Milk – Jaffna Style
1 cup whole mung beans – you can substitute split mung beans or masoor dal (red lentils)
1 onion, finely chopped
0.5 tspn cumin seed
large pinch turmeric
3 cloves garlic, crushed
0.25 tspn black pepper
0.25 cup coconut milk
1 green chilli, chopped
salt to taste
0.25 tspn chilli powder (optional)
Cook the mung beans in 2 cups of water with the onion and chilli.
Once it is cooked, add the pepper, cumin seed, salt, coconut milk and crushed garlic. Also add the chilli powder if using. Bring back to the boil and simmer for a moment. Put on the lid and allow the flavours to infuse for 5 mins before serving.
The onions and garlic can be sauteed off before cooking. You can also add a dried red chilli while the dal is cooking, or when adding the remaining ingredients.