Okra is not only delicious; it also has many medicinal properties. It is a gentle laxative, anti-inflammatory, strengthens bones, soothes urinary problems and enhances lactation. Enjoy this comforting Ayurvedic dal recipe I created after Sadananda proudly came home with fresh okra!
1 stick cinnamon
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 Tbsp. ghee
1 cup red lentils, washed
1 Roma tomato, chopped
1 tsp. turmeric
1 Tbsp ground coriander
4-6 cups water
1 lb okra, washed; tops and tails cut off.
2 bay leaves
1" piece grated fresh ginger
1 dry red chilli
1 pinch hing
1 spring curry leaves
Salt to taste
Heat 1Tbsp. ghee in heavy bottomed pan. Add the cinnamon stick and cumin seeds and fry for a minute or two, taking care not to burn the cumin.
Now add the washed dal, chopped tomato and grated ginger and fry for a few more minutes.
Add 4 cups of water and the powdered spices and bring to the boil. Allow to boil for 10-15 minutes until the dal starts to break up.
Now add the okra and simmer for another 20-30 minutes until the dal is well cooked and the okra is soft. Add more water as needed for your desired consistency. Some prefer a thicker dal eaten with chepati and some a thinner dal poured over rice.
Add the rest of the ghee in a small frying pan and heat. Add the red chilli, hing and curry leaves and sauté a few minutes, taking care not to burn the spices. Drop the sizzling spice mix into the hot dal.
Salt to taste and serve. Good with Bitter Gourd Sabji. (Karela sabji)