Not only is this green mung /lentil curry bursting with flavor because of the way its prepared, but its extremely healthy and is a perfect diet food. You may by familiar with mung sprouts in the fresh produce section of your grocery store, but this curry is made from the dried, non sprouted beans. The hara moong/green mung is high in fibre which fills you up and keeps you satisfied at the same time.
Alright! Enough of the health benefits now, but this curry served warm is intensely comforting in terms of taste and is so very good on a cold day with a slice of bread on the side or when served over a bowl of rice. This indian style curry can be cooked in a slow cooker which makes your life all the way easy.
Slow cooker is a blessing in disguise and only until recently I started using it more frequently to make Indian curries. Last week I made goat/mutton curry in a slow cooker and the meat was tender and the spices were absorbed very well, not to mention less dishes to clean and no stirring.
Don’t forget to add a little lemon/lime juice in the end. That is what makes this even better.
Hara moong / green mung before washing. It is know by so many names, so I thought I should add a picture in its raw form. This type of lentil cooks faster too.
Place oil in a pan on medium heat. Add cumin seeds and once it cracks, add onions + ginger + green chillies and sauté till onions are translucent.
Add all the spices and sauté for a minute till spices cook.
Add the tomatoes, mix and cover the pan till the tomato softens and till the oil layer can be seen on top.
Here you can see the tomatoes have cooked and all the extra water has evaporated which makes the oil rise to top.
This is the secret of making the base of any Indian curry. Fry the spices after adding onions for about a minute and once you add the tomatoes let it soften till oil layer is seen. If you reach this step then any curry will turn out great.
This time I cooked the mung curry in a slow cooker.
- 1 cup uncooked green lentils Hara moong
- 4 cups water Please refer notes
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 3/4 cup onions finely chopped (about half medium size onion)
- 1 tablespoon crushed ginger or ginger paste
- 2 green chillies slit
- 1 cup chopped tomato 1 medium size tomato
- 2-2 &1/2 teaspoons salt or to taste
- 2 teaspoons coriander powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
- 2 teaspoons red chilly powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2 tablespoons lime juice or to taste
- chopped coriander/cilantro leaves
- COOKING GREEN LENTIL/HARA MOONG: (Please refer notes for additional cooking methods)
- Rinse and soak the lentils in cold water for 2-4 hours and then drain the water. Add beans + salt and 2 cups of water in a pressure cooker and cook till one whistle. Turn the heat to low and cook for additional 10 minutes.
- (If not presoaking wash and cook the lentils with 3 cups of water.)
- TO MAKE MASALA:
- Place oil in a pan on medium heat. Add cumin seeds and once it cracks, add onions + ginger + green chillies and sauté till onions are translucent.
- Add all the spices and sauté for a minute till spices cook. Add the tomatoes, mix and cover the pan till the tomato softens and till the oil layer can be seen on top. Add the cooked lentils along with the liquid and let it simmer on low heat for 15-20 minutes.
- Adjust the salt as needed. Turn off the heat, add lime juice and garnish with cilantro/coriander leaves.
SLOW COOKER METHOD: Add this prepared masala + rinsed and drained lentils(without cooking) + salt + (4 cups) of water and cook it on low heat for 8 hours.
POT METHOD Rinse the lentils and add it to a pot with 3 cups of water + salt + masala. Bring it to a boil. Turn the heat to low and let it simmer for 30 minutes or so till the lentil cooks.
If the liquid is more, reduce the heat to low or medium and let the curry simmer for gravy to thicken or add additional warm water to liquify the gravy.
The amount of water changes depending upon the cooking methods and presoaking.