Moong Dal w/ Caramelized Onions

I am in San Diego this weekend helping my mom do some unpacking and wanted to make a different kind of dal. I feel like every time I am in town, I make the same stuff, so I wanted to mix it up. I really felt like making dal with goda masala but of course I never thought to bring the goda masala. And while my mom has the basic spices and such to cook, her kitchen is still fairly limited. Anyways, I ended up using garam masala and shredded whole coconut we picked up at the grocery store since they didn’t have any unsweetened (why on earth do they carry 3 kings of sweetened but no unsweetened??) and it gave this dal a really nice twist. Oh, and the onions on top! Lately, I have been cooking the onions with the dal in the pressure cooker and not adding any later, but I realized that you can taste them a lot if you add them later on. This time I ended up adding more caramelized onions on top and it was really tasty. There is this┬áLebanese┬árestaurant in LA called Gaby’s that does this with their mujadara lentils.

2 cups moong dal
1/2 onions sliced
2 garlic cloves chopped
1 tablespoon minced ginger
2 teaspoons tumeric
1 tomato diced
1 tablespoon coriander powder
1-2 tablespoons garam masala
1/2 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
7-8 curry leaves
2 green chilis diced
1/2 cup fresh shredded coconut (frozen or 1/3 cup dried would work just fine)
Jaggery or brown sugar (since my mom didn’t have jaggery, I used brown sugar)
1/2 tablespoon oil
1 more onion sliced

  1. Put dal, onions, garlic, ginger, tumeric and water (up to 1/3 the pressure cooker) in a pressure cooker. Heat on high until the first whistle, lower to medium and cook for about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the tomato, coriander powder, and garam masala to the dal.
  3. Heat oil in tadka or other small pan and add mustard seeds. When they start popping add the curry leaves and green chilis.
  4. Add this to the dal along with the coconut, jaggery and salt.
  5. Heat the other 1/2 tablespoon of oil in the skillet and cook the onions over pretty high heat until nice and browned. Add a little salt and jaggery while cooking to help with carmelizing.
  6. Serve dal with onions on top.

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