Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Dal Do Jeera (Mung Beans With Double Cumin)

Dal Do Jeera means Dal with double cumin; here it means cumin prepared two different ways - fried in the oil and dry-roasted. The warm, nutty, toasty flavors of both the fried and the dry roasted cumin seeds complement the dal deliciously. Easy to prepare and love, this dal is another one of our favorites. Leftovers, if any, may be frozen.

Mung dal, whole cumin seeds, peppercorns, and other spices are available in Indian Markets.

4 - 6 Servings


1 cup yellow Mung Dal
1/2 tsp Turmeric
Sea Salt to taste
1/4 cup Cilantro, finely chopped
1 tsp Cumin seeds
1/4 tsp Whole Black Pepper

2 tsp Ghee/Oil
1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
3-4 Coin-sized slices Ginger, minced
1 onion, finely chopped
1 or 2 mild/sweet Green Peppers, chopped
1 Jalapeño or Serrano Chile, deseeded and minced


Sort and wash the dal well. Bring to a boil in enough water to cover, reduce heat and simmer until soft and creamy - about 30 minutes; add the turmeric and salt. Set aside. The dal may be cooked in a pressure cooker to shorten the cooking time.

Heat the ghee/oil in a saucepan (about 2 or 3 quart/liter size) and add the 1/2 tsp cumin seeds.

When the cumin seeds are fragrant and begin to pop, immediately add the onions, ginger, peppers, and chile with a pinch of salt; cook covered stirring occasionally until the veggies soften; sprinkle a tiny bit of water as necessary to keep veggies from sticking and burning.

Stir in the dal and simmer covered over low heat until the dal is heated through. A little boiling water may be added to thin the dal; dal can be served thick or thin according to your preference.

Turn off the heat and let sit covered for five minutes.

Toast the peppercorns and the cumin seeds in a small pan until fragrant and a bit browned - both cumin and pepper pop, dance and have a tendency to jump out the pan - just don't let them escape! Let cool.

Grind/pound the roasted cumin and pepper into a powder; mix into the dal.

Stir in the cilantro and serve hot by itself, or with roti/rice. Enjoy!!

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