Murungai keerai kootu is a very delicious and an easy make dish . The difficult part is cleaning the leaves , even the small stalks are known to cause stomach discomfort . I usually get a few bunches during the weekend and clean the leaves and bag it and place it in the deep recesses of my refrigerator. So they are ready when ever i need them .
Murungai leaves -1cup ( cleaned and washed )
moong dhal -1cup cooked and mashed ( cook in pressure cooker with 2 cups of water up-to three whistles with a tsp of turmeric , a pinch of asafoetida and a crushed garlic pod. If cooking on stove add 3 cups of water and a tsp of oil as well and cook until you can fully mash between fingers tips . Cook on a slow flame and keep stirring to avoid charring )
Onion -1/2( chopped)
Tomato -1 (chopped ) (optional)
Garlic -2-3( chopped )To Season-
Dry Red chillies- as per heat requirement
Add oil to pan , season with the seasoning ingredients , then add onion , garlic after they brown add the chopped leaves , stir well , add salt and a tsp of sugar to balance any bitterness . Sugar also helps to maintain the colour . Cook Closed for a while say 10 mins ( these leaves take a tad longer than your normal greens ) then add tomato and cook till tomatoes are well incorporated and look mushy . Finally add the cooked dhal with any the water , stir , cook closed for a couple of mins , taste fr salt , add grated coconut and it is ready to serve.
*Murungai leaves harvested after a rain shower tend to be bitter .
*moong dhal is traditionally used for kootu varieties , but you can mix toor dhal and moong dhal in a 1:1 ratio as well .
* tomatoes are traditionally not used in kootu but I’ve found that they give the required tartness and lift to the dish .