Masiyal is a South Indian dish made from dal and vegetables. It can be made with toor dal or a mixture of toor dal and mung dal. It can contain tamarind, and it always includes a lot of vegetables. However, there are no powdered spices used. Instead it is seasoned with a few selected spices which often include fenugreek. This recipe, however, is unusual in that it contains neither fenugreek nor tamarind.
The recipe is another from the doyen of TamBram cooking from South India, Meenakshi Ammal, in the first volume of Cook and See. It is in the chapter of Poritha Kuzhambu, and is one member of the family of toor dal based vegetable dishes. (Occasionally green gram dal – mung dal – is used in place of toor dal, or a mixture of the two dals is used.)
This same recipe can be made with green leaves – amaranth leaves, any greens, fenugreek leaves, radish tops, etc. I guess in these modern times we could use beetroot leaves too. You can make it thin as a Kuzhambu, or thick as a Koottu, depending on personal preference.
Similar recipes include Elephant (Foot) Yam Masiyal, Poritha Kootu with Snake Gourd, Spinach with a Peppery Coconut Gravy, Poritha Kuzhambu with Tamarind, Elephant Yam Masiyal with Fenugreek Seeds, Brinjal Chidambaram Gothsu, and Poritha Kuzhambu with Amaranth Leaves.
Or alternatively, browse all of Meenakshi Ammal’s dishes that we have made. All Indian recipes are here and our Indian Essentials here. Or take some time to explore our Mid Autumn collection of recipes.
Ribbed Gourd Masiyal | Peerkankai Masiyal
0.25 cups red gram dal (toor dal) or green gram dal (mung dal)
175g ribbed gourd
6 green chillies
0.25 tspn brown mustard seeds
small piece ginger, chopped
2 tspns ghee or Indian Sesame Oil
Cook the toor dal until very mushy/pastey. This will take around 30 mins unless the dal is old and drier – then it will take longer. Add a little water if necessary and mix well.
Meanwhile, cook the ribbed gourd in a little amount of water with salt until tender. Mash it a little when cooked.
Add the ribbed gourd to the cooked toor dal with the asafoetida powder. Bring it back to the boil.
Fry the chopped chillies in ghee and add to the gourd and dal, and mix well. Boil again for a few minutes then remove from the heat.
Make the tadka by melting the ghee and adding the mustard seeds. Allow them to pop, then add the ginger. After a moment add the cashew nuts and curry leaves, allow the nuts to brown slightly, then pour all onto the dal.
Squeeze the lime juice and add to the dal. Mix, garnish with coriander leaves and serve.
recipe notes and alternatives
This same recipe can be made with green leaves – amaranth leaves, paruppu kerai, fenugreek leaves, radish tops, etc. I guess in these modern times we could use beetroot leaves too. You can make it thin as a Kuzhambu, or thick as a Koottu, depending on personal preference.