Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Parippu Curry (Dal) and Jeera Rice

Give me dal and rice any day and i wouldn't complain one bit. I love dal in all forms...tadka, or fry or whatever. But the naadan parippu curry with rice a poppadom is my all time favourite. It just doesn't come out the way my grand mom makes, but i still make it when i yearn for it and finish it up more or less at one go. I'm however surprised that Ro has never tasted the naadan parippu curry in spite of being born and brought up in Kottayam. He was surprised when i mentioned this and said i was just being a bit adventurous and trying out new variations of dal. Adventurous i was, but definitely not the first time I've had naadan parippu curry. After all that hype, he thought it had a 'different zing' than the usual dal preps, but not 'zinged' enough to fall head over heels in love with it. I promised it actually tasted much better back home.

Toor/Moong dal- 1/2 cup ( I use them depending on my mood. I honestly don't know the difference, taste-wise)
Water- as required

To grind:
Grated coconut- 1/2 cup
Jeera- 1/2 tsp
Green chilli- 3
Turmeric pwd- a pinch

Oil- 1 tsp
Shallots/ small onions- 1 big or 3 to 4 small
Garlic- 2 pods, thinly sliced
Salt- to taste

To temper:
Dry red chilli- 2
Curry leaves- a sprig
Mustard seeds- 1 tsp
Coconut oil- 1 tsp

Grind all the items in the 'to grind' section and keep aside.
Dry roast the dal in a frying pan till it becomes fragrant. In a sauce pan, boil water and cook the dal. Mash and keep aside. I like it a bit watery, so i take a little extra water.
In a deep pan, heat about a tsp oil and sautee the onions and garlic till they become soft. To this add the ground paste and sautee for about 2 minutes. Add the mashed dal and salt and cook on low fire, just enough to infuse the flavours. At this stage, you can add more water if required. Once done, remove and keep aside.
Just before you serve, temper it. Heat the rest of the oil and when hot splutter mustard seeds, red chillies and curry leaves and pour over the dal. As mentioned before, i think this adds to the flavour of the dish and is my favourite bit.

For the jeera rice, while boiling rice, add about 1 tsp of jeera seeds and you will get nice fragrant, a slightly yellow jeera rice.
Notes: The ground coconut mix has to be more or less like a paste which i guess makes the curry thick.
Substitute coconut oil with ghee and it will add to the mallu-ness