An exceptional Indian dish, Diana’s Moong Dal with Potatoes and Swiss Chard offers a superb vegetarian meal packed with intense flavors and textures.
Moong Dal

Diana's Moong Dal with Potatoes and Swiss Chard
Recipe type: Vegetarian
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 8
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick (4-inches long)
  • seeds of 2 green cardamom pods
  • 4 peppercorns
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/4 Cups whole unpeeled moong dal
  • 6 Cups water
  • 1 piece ginger root (1-inch long); finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic; minced
  • 1 small dried hot red chile or Cayenne pepper, to taste
  • 2 red boiling potatoes; each cut into 8 pieces
  • 2 Cups chopped Swiss chard leaves (packed tight)
  • 1 Tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/2 Tablespoon sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons oil (to 3 Tablespoons)
  • 1 large onion; thinly sliced
  • 1/2 Tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 brown cardamom pod (optional)
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 3 serrano chiles 2 chiles seeded, one whole
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tomatoes chopped
  • juice of 1 lemon, or to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon butter or ghee (optional)
  • 1/4 Cup chopped cilantro
  1. Grind coriander seeds, cloves, cinnamon stick, green cardamom seeds and peppercorns in spice mill. Place in bowl and stir in paprika, 3/4 teaspoon turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper.
  2. Wash dal and remove any stones. Put in Dutch oven and add water, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, ginger, garlic and dried chiles. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then simmer, covered, until dal has softened, 40 minutes.
  3. Check to see if dal needs more water. Add potatoes, chard, salt and sugar and cook until tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. In large skillet over medium heat, saute onions, cumin seeds, cardamom pod and bay leaf in oil until onions are slightly golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Add serrano chiles and crushed garlic. Stir 1 minute. Add ground spice mixture and fry 1 to 2 minutes. Add more oil or water if needed to keep mixture from drying out and scorching. Add tomatoes and stir until tomatoes soften, 2 minutes.
  5. Add onion mixture to moong dal. Stir together and heat to simmer. Cook, covered, making sure dal does not stick, 2 to 4 minutes. Stir in lemon juice. Taste and add more salt if needed. Add butter and stir. Remove cardamom pod and garnish with cilantro before serving.
  6. This recipe yields 6 to 8 servings.
Spinach, kale or mustard greens can be substituted for the chard. Serve the dal over steamed basmati rice as a main dish, accompanied by Cucumber Mint Raita, or serve as a side dish.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 Calories: 167 Fat: 4 g Carbohydrates: 25 g Sodium: 911 mg Fiber: 2.4 g Protein: 10 g Cholesterol: 0

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