Lunch yesterday was a colorful affair, thought I’d write about it.

On the menu was brown rice, yellow moong dal with fresh ginger, green chilly, turmeric, cilantro and a generous dollop of ghee, steamed carrots and pole beans with a tadka of mustard seeds, ajwain seeds, dry coriander and cumin powder. Fresh peas steamed and cooked in coconut milk, spiced and garnished with cilantro was a leftover from the night before.

The moong dal was excellent. I cooked it in the pressure cooker (as I do with most dals) and blended it into a smooth puree. Moong dal is very easy to digest, light on the tummy, and perfect for those days when you want to give your digestive system a break but need the energy to go about your day. Moong is a pale yellow grain and it cooks up like a dream. You could make this dal even if you don’t have a pressure cooker. All you need to do is soak it in water for an hour or so and cook it on the stove top in a regular pan as well. Once cooked, add water and blend to the desired consistency. Fresh ginger adds a gentle tang that lightens the taste of the cooked dal. One green chilly adds very little spice – I wonder why I add it! This is the thick green chilly, not the little Thai kind that packs a mighty punch. Cilantro is my eternal favorite; it adds a punch of color and I adore its taste and freshness. Ghee adds depth of flavor with its rich taste. A post on ghee is coming up soon (whenever I get to it).

Carrots and beans came from Sandy Springs Farmers Market. Steamed them using the IKEA steamer (it’s cute!). Warmed some sesame oil, threw in mustard seeds, ajwain seeds (or carom seeds as this website tells me), dried coriander and cumin powder. You could add a few pinches of turmeric and/or red chilli powder as well. Don’t forget to add salt to taste.

Steamed peas in coconut milk? An unsuccessful experiment… 🙁