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My Everyday Moong Dal

(recipe, Madhur Jaffrey)


Our family can eat this every single day of the week. It is my soul food.


  1. 1 cup (7 oz.) moong dal (hulled and split mung beans), washed and drained
  2. ¼ tsp. ground turmeric
  3. ¾ tsp. salt, or to taste
  4. 2 Tbsp. olive oil or ghee
  5. ⅛ tsp. ground asafetida
  6. ½ tsp. whole cumin seeds
  7. 1 to 2 dried hot red chiles (the short cayenne type)
  8. 1 medium shallot, peeled and cut into fine slivers


  1. Put the dal in a medium pot and add 3½ cups water. Bring to a boil. Skim off the white froth and add the turmeric. Stir to mix. Cover partially, turn the heat to a gentle simmer, and cook 45 minutes. Add the salt and stir to mix. Turn off heat.
  2. Pour the oil into a small frying pan and set over medium-high heat. When hot, put in the asafetida, cumin seeds, and chiles, quickly in that order. As soon as the chiles darken (a matter of seconds), add the shallots. Stir and cook until the shallots brown and then quickly pour the contents of the frying pan over the cooked dal. Stir to mix.