Bananti Saaru

I have been meaning to post more postpartum recipes but lagging behind. A few months back when a dear friend had a baby, I had an opportunity to make some special postpartum dishes for her. Here is the basic Saaru/dal. This is more of a template than a recipe. Essentially vegetables and dal combination can be varied but the spices and the process need to be pretty much the same.

We will need,

Toor dal/Moong Dal  about 1/4 cup
Turmeric  a pinch
Vegetables  1 cup (diced carrots, diced Chayote squash, green beans, dill , spinach, Methi leaves)

Ghee 1 tbsp
Black pepper corns 2 tsp
Jeera 1/2 tsp
Hing a generous pinch
Dry red chillies 1-2
Curry leaves
Garlic 3-4 cloves
Salt to taste
Jaggery to taste(optional)

  • Wash the dal in several changes of water and soak it for an hour or so. It can be soaked overnight if you happen to be forgetful like me. Drain and place it in a pressure cooker along with a pinch of turmeric and about 1 cup of water and cook till the dal is completely mushy. If baby happens to be colicky, throw in a pinch of hing and a few drop of ghee with the dal and then cook the dal.
  • Cook the vegetable separately till soft. Alternately vegetable can be combined with the dal in the pressure cooker just that the vegetables will end up mushy. 
  • Now prepare the Oggarane. Crush the jeera and black pepper corn into a coarse powder. 
  • Heat Ghee, throw in the hing, curry leaves ,broken red chilly and crushed garlic. Fry till the garlic is fragrant. Toss the crushed black pepper and jeera mixture. Saute for a few seconds and quickly pour it into the cooked dal.
  • Combine the dal, cooked vegetables and the oggarane well. Heat it thoroughly. Adjust salt and jaggery if using. Serve hot with steamed rice.
The idea is to eat freshly cooked food. But if it is not possible in this age of working mothers the recipe can be doubled/tripled. Just ensure to reduce the number of garlic cloves  by 2-3 for a bigger batch.

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