Jaipur-Style Quick and Easy Mung Dal

"A quick and easy to make recipe, adapted from a recipe by international culinary celebrity Kurma Dasa from one of the cards in the 52 card set 'Quick Vegetarian recipes you can prepare in a hurry'. Kurma Dasa believes that "Life in the fast lane shouldn't mean life in the fast food lane'. The estimated times below for preparation and cooking do not include the one hour needed for soaking the split mung beans. On reading White Rose Child's review, I checked the source for this recipe and Kurma Dasa definitely specified 3 tablespoons of cumin. Several of the ingredients in this recipe are way too hot for my taste preferences. I often use cumin in recipes but nothing like 3 teaspoons let alone 3 tablespoons. I suggest that you use cumin - and any other ingredients - to suit your taste preferences."
photo by mersaydees photo by mersaydees
photo by mersaydees
photo by White Rose Child photo by White Rose Child
Ready In:




  • Add the mung beans, water, turmeric and carrots to a heavy-based medium pan over a high heat and bring the water to the boil; reduce the heat and allow the contents of the pan to simmer, semi-covered, for 15 minutes, or until the mung beans start to break down; add the cauliflower florets to the pan and simmer for another 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, heat the ghee in a small pan over a medium heat; add the cumin and fennel seeds and gently cook them, stirring occasionally, until they have darkened a few shades; add the chilies and ginger and continue cooking until aromatic.
  • Pour the contents of the small pan into the simmering soup in the medium-sized pan; add the fresh coriander leaves, lemon juice, salt and pepper; serve hot in individual serving dishes with a simple rice dish or bread.

Questions & Replies

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  1. This same recipe, with very minor differences in the cumin amount, appears in the Hare Krishna cook book published in 2015. No attribution given in either direction.
  2. Love this dish! I'm glad BlueMoon double checked the specified quantity of cumin seeds because I usually agree 100% with White Rose Child and I was curious because in the absence of seeing the reviews first, I used the full 3 tablespoons without batting an eye! Of course, cumin is one of my favorite spices in both Indian and Mexican cuisines. I couldn't find split mung beans so used whole without incident. I used a jalapeno chile because that's what I had on hand. I think the lemon juice and coriander really balance out the spices. Thanks, BlueMoonDownUnder! Made for <b>Newest Zaar Tag</b>.
  3. I'm updating my review here, in response to bluemoon's note about the cumin. As said, 3 Tbsp. cumin seeds is an awful lot for most people (in the West, anyway). I just used 1.5 Tbsp, and even that gave it quite an overpowering heat and bitterness. I would say 2-3 tsp of seeds would be good. Any more gives the dish an extreme cumin kick! If you're careful to follow your personal spice instincts, this will have a terrific flavor and be lovely with either rice or flatbreads.
  4. I personally did not like it. The mung beans turned into a mush at the end of the process, despite a large amount of spices that went into it, the result was mediocre.


July 2008 update: VERY happy to be back on Zaar after about a two year absence due to having had no internet connection at home, and having been too unwell for a time so that getting re-connected wasn't even a priority! <br> <br>And really looking forward to getting back into the Zaar world and connecting again with the many wonderful people I knew before, and new people, of course!
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