Hope all of you had a lovely 4th of July. We took a little vacation to LA and Malibu.It was our first road trip ever & could not have been more fun.We spent a lot of time on beaches, sun bathing, chatting and eating fresh seafood. A visit to botanical gardens and theme park rounded off Â the trip. All in all,Â LA was definitely a respite from the over the top hot weather in Vegas right now. Its 113 F/45 C as I type this 🙁
Breaking loose from almost a perfect vacation, our car refused to behave a couple of times in the middle of Mojave desert while driving back. Being 4th of July and with everything closed, we almost reached a point when we decided to stay over in nearby town for the night. However, thanks to few God sent personnel at gas stations,we managed way back home.
I normally don't binge during vacations,still all the outside food makes me want to eat simple, clean meals for the days that follow. I came home wanting just that. This salad is my go to recipe for those days.
Yellow Mung lentils (dal) are de skinned whole mung bean and have a very mild taste. I have grown eating them in this dryish preparation either as a side with flat breads or mixed with ghee & rice as well as salad.Â Since yellow mung lentils are quick to cook, this salad can be fixed in no time.Once you cook the lentils, it's just a matter of chopping the veggies and tossing everything together with lots of lemon juice. I added a handful of ready to eat edamame beans & there it was - a hearty, protein packed salad which is so light & summery. And yup..so healthy!
Did I tell you..this is my 150th post...kinda feels good 🙂
Lentils form a big part of indian cuisine - meals are far from complete without them - soups, fritters, flat breads, stews, patties...you will find them used in all ways imaginable. India being a vegetarian country, we get our daily protein dose from them. I cook lentils daily in some way or the other. P is more of a lentil soup person, I enjoy them either way.
I was introduced to edamame after I came to USA. I did not care for them much initially but knowing how good they are, now I try to include them in our diet as much as possible.I am still away from eating them all on their own but have found a perfect way to eat them this way - overshadowed by earthy taste of lentils & crunch of fresh vegetables - hardly making their presence felt.
Mung Dal & Edamame Salad
For The lentils
- ½ cup yellow mung lentils split
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- pinch hing asafetida
- 1 teaspoon ginger chopped
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup water for cooking
For The Salad
- ¼ cup red onion chopped
- 1 Persian cucumber chopped
- 5 grape tomatoes halved
- 1 tablespoon cilantro chopped
- 1 green chilli chopped
- 1.5 tablespoon fresh lemon juice or to taste
- ½ teaspoon chaat masala
- Salt to taste
Cook The Mung Lentils
- Thoroughly wash the mung lentils 2-3 times under stream of water. Soak the lentils in enough water for at least 2 -3 hours. Once soaked, drain and discard the water.
- In a medium pot with lid, heat the oil on medium. Remove from stove and temper the oil with cumin and asafetida. Let cumin crackle.
- Add the ginger & turmeric powder next.Saute for 5-6 seconds. Add the soaked lentils.
- Return the pot to the stove. Stir well to coat the lentils in the tempering. Add 1 cup water and cover.
- Let cook on low heat for 8-12 minutes or until till the lentils are thoroughly cooked but retain their shape. You will need to check 1-2 times in between to see that the lentils are not sticking to the pot bottom, if so, add little bit of water. Don't peek too much while the lentils cook, the idea is so steam them slowly on low heat.
- If using fresh edamame beans, add them to the pot towards the last 3-4 minutes of cooking, so that they steam with the lentils.This will ensure that they remain green & crunchy.
- Once cooked, put the stove off and let the lentils & edamame sit covered for another 5-8 minutes till they cool down a bit.
- Open the lid and fluff gently using a fork and let them cool off completely. At this point, if you want to make the salad later, you can refrigerate the lentils in air tight containers for 1-2 days.
Toss the Salad
- In a serving bowl, toss the cooled lentils & edamame with the chopped vegetables, cilantro & green chillies. Squirt lemon juice, add chaat masala,and salt to taste. Combine well and serve at room temperature.