Kempu soppu saaru / Red spinach and lentil curry

My friend Roopa made this once, when I had been to her house for lunch. It was so good. I have geographically moved away from her, and I miss her cooking. Her perfect jamoons, spicy fish fry and her lamb pilaf.The curry is pretty easy to make, boil the greens and lentils together, temper it, and you are done!
What I used: Serves 4
1 cup thogri bele (toor dal/masoor dal) Soak in 1 cup of water for 15-30 minutes, that way it cooks faster.
1 cup of fresh greens coarsely chopped (a single green or a combination of many, like spinach, dill, cilantro, dantu (red chinese green or amaranthus)
2 tsp curry powder
3-4 fresh garlic petals, slightly crushed with a rolling pin
1 small sized shallot/onion chopped
1 medium sized tomato chopped
1tsp coconut flakes dry/fresh (optional)
Salt to taste

To temper: 1 tsp ghee/oil, a little mustard and cumin seeds. A few green chilies, curry leaves and a pinch aseofotida.

In a thick bottom pan/cooker pan, add in all the vegetables, greens, soaked dhal, curry powder and salt. Cook for 12-15 minutes on medium heat. Pressure cooking it is faster. One or two pressures are ideal. Once they are all soft and cooked, use an egg beater, or a manual hand churner, and churn the mixture for about 30 seconds, so the dhal and greens blend. Temper it.
In a small pan, on medium heat, add ghee. When it shimmers, add mustard and cumin seeds. Cover; when they are done splattering, add red chilies, curry leaves, and hing. Cover. When that is done splattering, turn off the heat. Toss it into the cooked dhal mixture. Stir in and cook for a couple of minutes. Serve hot with ragi mudhe or soft cooked rice and a dollop of ghee. Enjoy!

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