29 February, 2012

Sprouted Moong Usal Recipe | Moongachi Usal

Sprouted Moong Usal | Moongachi Usal
You know that you are watching too much TV when you laugh at the F.R.I.E.N.D.S jokes even before it is made! ~sigh~ Yes! The joy of staring in to idiot box for too long is rubbing on me and slowly I see myself blinking like an idiot at idiot box!

After coming back from 9-5 work load and then one frantic hour of giving bath to Lil dumpling (and in turn getting drenched from top to toe by all that splashing by LD), chasing the super active naked toddler around with nappy in one hand and night dress in another, stuffing his mouth with food and almost threatening him to disinherit in my will (whatever meagre wealth I can accumulate after spending most of my salary on his toys and fancy cloths and shoes and not to forget the bomb they charge at his day care in name of looking after him in my absence) if he doesn’t stop from throwing food all around except in his own mouth, trying to teach him brush his teeth instead of chewing and then patting him to sleep, I am left with long evening to kill. These past couple of days I am easily spotted with a dazed look due to heavy work load and bags of dark circles due to lack of sleep. I feel too tired and lazy to cook after a really busy day, I plonk on the sofa with a TV remote in one hand and the fingers dancing on buttons that will bring shame to the most competitive typists! 

I know I could simply switch from watching sitcoms to documentaries but after over-working my brain throughout the day, I simply wish to give it a rest, even if it means that I end up watching the re-runs of The Simpsons or the Friends series for the hundredth time! And the joys of recording the shows when I am out at work to be watched at late night will need a post of its own! Go on, judge me! I am a TV junky!!!

Healthy Snacking ~ Sprouted Moong Usal | Moongachi Usal
Slowly I am trying to switch from TV to my first love, books! True that the number of books I read post baby delivery reflects the drop in UK market! I am trying very hard to resume my passion for reading like a current Tory-Lib Dem coalition parties trying to stick together! But alas, the days of uninterrupted reading till I finish the whole book in one sitting is long gone and almost forgotten when my Lil Dumpling decides its fun to remove his trousers and in turn pull down his nappy and run around in backyard showing his perfect moons for all the neighbours in our row of town houses! So instead of reading thick books/novels, I decided to visit our town library after almost 1 and half years to look for short story collections.

Since I went there in the afternoon during my lunch break, I had little more time in hand and decided to take a short visit to children’s library on the basement of beautiful Georgian styled building. Little did I realise that I will be transported to my childhood days in the next few minutes as I opened the huge 10 feet double doors. The huge open spaced rectangle room was designed for little people to run around looking for the books they wanted to read! Tall rosewood shelves were placed around the room, touching the walls and small colourful tables and chairs were kept in end of the rooms leaving enough space for the kids to plonk on the soft cushions on the floor to lie down and read the books or watch varieties of shows organised by the council ranging from book reading times to arty-crafty things to magic shows. I was hugely impressed with the number of books, DVDs and CDs they had for kids in every age group.

A bowl of goodness ~ Sprouted Moong Usal | Moongachi Usal

A quick conversation with the librarian revealed I could get a library card for Lil Dumpling instead of borrowing books using my card. For a serious book lover, I was over the moon to see little plastic card sporting a giraffe with Lil Dumpling’s name on it! Since then I have been bringing new books to home, proudly watching Lil Dumpling’s face light up as he turns pages after pages of wonderful picture books and narrating his own story to us in his baby language! Lil dumpling did show his love for books just when he turned 4 months old whenever I read him stories from board books but now it is getting even more exciting with him laughing and clapping and pointing to pictures when I read out stories of bunnies and bears or funny things from Dr. Seuss’s collections. I just love this new experience of living my own childhood through Lil Dumpling and we both get lost in a wonderland of books. Things are slowly improving for me too as I move away from idiot box to book land, and it just gets better with each passing day! So now you know the story of Lil Dumpling ended up becoming the youngest library card holder in our family!

Quick, simple and delicious ~ Sprouted Moong Usal | Moongachi Usal

In my last post, I did mention about Lil Dumpling’s love for Sprouted Moong Beans. Here is one more recipe which he loves. It is Maharastrian Moongachi Usal or Sprouted Moong Dal Usal. Moong Usal is nothing but a simple stir fry with few handfuls of ingredients. It just takes 5 minutes of preparation time and 5 minutes of cooking time. You don’t need to be genius in mathematics to guess how long it takes to cook from start to end! We love our Moong Usal undercooked with a nutty flavour still intact in sprouted moong dals. So if you like it to be well cooked, then simply increase the cooking time till the sprouted moong beans are well cooked. And one more thing, I didn’t use any spice powders as it is traditionally used in Moongachi Usal or Moong Usal as I didn’t want any overpowering taste. so feel free to use the spice powders listed under ingredient list if you like to add some more flavours in your Sprouted Moong Usal. Lil Dumpling loves his Moong Usal crushed with some rice and yogurt. While HD had his with Chapatti, chilled yogurt and cut mango pickle, I relished it with big bowl of salad leaves, tomato, onions and cucumber.

Sprouted Moong Dal

Sprouted Moong Usal | Moongachi Usal

Moogachi Usal/Sprouted Moong Dal Usal (Healthy and spicy salad of lightly stir fried sprouted moong beans with onion and Indian spices)
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cooking time: 5 mins
Serves: 2 people as main dish and 4 people as side dish
Recipe Level: Easy/Beginner
Spice Level: Medium
Shelf Life: Best served fresh but can be refrigerated for 2 days
Serving Suggestion: As a salad or as a main dish or serve with rice/chapatti and dal

2 cups Sprouted Moong Beans
1 medium Onion, finely chopped
1-2 Green Chillies, finely chopped (Adjust acc to taste)
½ tsp Jaggary/Sugar (Adjust acc to taste)
Salt to taste
Fresh Lime Juice to taste

For Tadka/Tempering:
½ tsp Mustard Seeds
½ tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds (Optional)
A sprig of Curry Leaves
A pinch of Hing/Asafoetida
½ tbsp Oil

Spices used in traditional Usal (I didn’t use any):
¼ tsp Haldi/Turmeric Powder
½ tsp Coriander Powder
½ tsp Goda Masala/Garam Masala (Adjust acc to taste)
½ tsp Red Chilli Powder (Adjust acc to taste)

Grab your bowl ~ Sprouted Moong Usal | Moongachi Usal
  1. Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds to it. When mustard starts to sizzle and pop, add cumin seeds, curry leaves and hing.
  2. Just when cumin seeds start to sizzle, add finely chopped green chillies and onion and saute till onions turns golden brown, about 3 mins.
  3. At this stage you can add one medium finely chopped tomato and the spice powders listed above. I didn’t use any of these.
  4. Next add sprouted moong beans, jaggary/sugar and salt to taste and let it cook for 4-5 mins until moong sprouts are half cooked. You can cook it longer (add little water too) if you prefer them thoroughly cooked but we enjoy them slightly under cooked.
  5. Switch off the gas and add dash of freshly squeezed lime juice to taste. Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves, and freshly grated coconut if desired, and serve Sprouted Moong Usal or Moongachi Usal immediately on its own or as a side dish with rice/chapatti and dal. Bliss!

Sprouted Moong Usal | Moongachi Usal

Sia’s Notes:
  • The addition of the spice powders under ingredient list if optional. These spices are usually used in making traditional Maharashtrian Usal recipes.
  • We love our Moong Usal undercooked with a nutty flavour still intact in sprouted moong dals. So if you like it to be well cooked, then simply increase the cooking time till the sprouted moong beans are well cooked.
  • You can also top it with some freshly grated coconut.
  • You can also add finely diced tomatoes while cooking. And also can add chopped cucumber, lettuce or other favourite salad greens of your choice while serving.
  • Serve it as stuffing for wraps along with some sour cream and fresh salad leaves.

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  1. This used to be our fav breakfast in our childhood... My mom used to prepare exactly like this.. Bachpan ki yaad aayi...

  2. A delicious and healthy dish! Right up my alley.



  3. The life of a working mother is a harsh one. I admire you because you can still come home and make such a simple dish look great and write about it. :)

  4. Lovely clicks and inviting food :)

  5. Hi Sia,
    That's a great recipe. My lil on eis 21/2 yrs old and I can relate so much to everything you are saying.
    I have a question....do you sprout your own moong dal? And how do you do it?

  6. My mom cooks this dish similar way but she just makes it plain with out any spices juts tadaka, ginger, green chilles, curry leaves. I'm too lazy to do that these days so just put every thing in cooker and make it to into dal:).

    Hope ur lil is enjoying all those books he is getting from the library.

  7. Sounds very healthy... and delicious too!! Nice pics!!

  8. This looks really delicious. I am so glad to have come across your blog today!

  9. Delicious n yummy dish,looks so healthy.

  10. This looks so incredible...love these flavors!

  11. I am amazed that after so much of work and the busy routines in the evenings you have so much enthusiasm and energy to click beautiful photos and write so well... :) Wonderful post Sia...


  12. Your photos are so pretty! I've cooked a similar dish last week for the first time, it was lovely.

  13. i did but with spices and without lemon squeeze...still tastes good

  14. i did but with spices and without lemon squeeze...still tastes good


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