Murungai Keerai Poriyal, Drumstick Leaves Stir Fry

          When something is available in abundance, we don't appreciate it, but then, when the same thing is not available easily, then you start liking it more. As far as food is concerned, this applies a lot, as a kid I didn't like sundakkai/turkey berries, vazhaithandu, small bitter gourds/midhi pavakkai and then the different varieties of greens/keerai, especially murungai keerai/ drumstick leaves. Forget about finding it when I was in the US, but even after coming to India, I don't get this keerai/greens that much here in Bangalore, or at least where I stay. So, now when I see it sometimes, I just get a couple of bunches. Usually my mom prepares this poriyal separately or along with vazhaipoo/banana flower, either way I love it. If you stir fry just the greens alone, it might not be that tasty, but the dal/lentils and grated coconut give it a nice taste and it goes well with rice and sambar/kuzhambu..

Need To Have

  • Cleaned Keerai/Greens - 2 cups
  • Tuvar Dal/Split Pigeon Peas - 2 tablespoons
  • Mustard Seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Urad Dal/Husked Black Gram Dal - 2 teaspoons
  • Asafoetida - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Dried Red Chilly - 1, broken into half
  • Grated Coconut - 2 tablespoons
  • Turmeric Powder - 1/8 teaspoon
  • Salt to taste


          Soak the tuvar dal for about 30 minutes, then cook it with some water and the turmeric powder, till done. Clean, wash and chop the keerai and keep.

          Heat some oil, add the urad dal and mustard seeds, when it starts spluttering add the dried red chilly followed by the asafoetida. Then add the chopped keerai/greens, salt, sprinkle some water, cover and cook till the greens get cooked, add the dal and mix.

          Finally add the grated coconut, mix and remove.

The dal should not become mushy, but when you press between the fingers, it should be soft.
Actually I felt the dal was not cooked that well, that's why I added it along with the keerai and cooked it a little more, otherwise you add it only after the keerai is cooked.


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