Drumstick Leaves Dal – Murungakeerai paruppu is an excellent lentil stew rich in vitamins, proteins etc., and is very high in nutritious. This Drumstick leaves dal is commonly known as Murungakeerai Paruppu in South India especially Tamil Nadu. It is a soft and appetizing lentil stew made with tur dal, cooked with drumstick leaves (Murungakeerai) and spices mixed together making this a tangy and savory dish. Drumstick leaves dal is often served with hot rice and can also be eaten with chapatti or roti.
Drumstick leaves provides essential amount of iron and calcium especially for women especially. These leaves were extensively used in siddha medicine in India. Drumstick scientifically called as Moringa oleifera is commonly known as Shevaga (in Marathi), Murungai (Tamil), Muringnga (Malayalam) and Munagakaya (Telugu) in different Indian languages. Drumstick is the most widely cultivated species of the genus Moringa comes from the Moringaceae family.
In South India, it is used to prepare a variety of sambar and is also fried. In other parts of India, especially West Bengal and Bangladesh, it is made into a variety of curry dishes by mixing with coconut, poppy seeds, and mustard or boiled until the drumsticks are semi-soft and consumed directly without any extra processing or cooking. It is used in curries, sambars, kormas, and dals, although it is also used to add flavor to cutlets, etc.
In Maharashtra, the pods are used in sweet & sour curries called Aamatee. Tender drumstick leaves, finely chopped, are used as garnish for vegetable dishes, dals, sambars, salads, etc. It is also used in place of or along with coriander, as these leaves have high medicinal value. In some regions the flowers are gathered and cleansed to be cooked with besan to make pakoras. Drumstick leaves or Muranga Keerai is considered the ‘Queen of all Greens’ as it is valued for having the richest source of beta carotene among all green leafy vegetables.
Drumstick tree also known as Moringa Oleifera is basically a very common tree widely grown across India and grown in backyard of most Indian homes. There is a saying that if you have a drumstick plant in your garden that symbolizes that you have a doctor at home. It is the best home remedial medicine used for curing most of the common diseases and is the most recommended spinach variety for all the age groups.
How to prepare Drumstick Leaves Dal – Murungakeerai Paruppu:
- Tur dal, boiled - 1 cup
- Chilli powder - 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder - pinch
- Salt - to taste
- Cumin seeds - ¼ tsp
- Oil - 1 tbsp
- Whole garlic - 6 nos
- Mustard seeds - ¼ tsp
- Whole red chillies - 3 nos
- Onions, chopped - 1 no
- Drumstick leaves - 1 cup T
- amarind juice - 1 tbsp
- First boil the tur dal in a cooker and keep aside.
- Heat oil in kadai and when it becomes hot, add red chillies, mustard seeds. When mustard seeds splutter, add cumin seeds, whole garlic and sauté.
- Add chopped onions, salt and sauté for 2 minutes.
- Add turmeric, drumstick leaves, chilli powder, tamarind juice.
- Allow boiling and when it comes to a boil, add tur dal and cook for some time and switch of the flame.
- Serve hot with rice or chapatti.
Drumstick leaves and Tur dal is a powerhouse with innumerable health benefits. They complement well with each other in flavour, taste and texture. They are also rich in iron, calcium and vitamin C.
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