Gravy side-dishes / Kootu/South-Indian dal with veggies

Keerai Poricha Kootu/Spinach & Lentil

Hurray! The start of yet another week of marathon blogging! For me, it is going to be choc-a-block with Thalis (Combo food platters) this week. During the last edition of the marathon started by Srivalli, a lot of people prepared wonderful and elaborately planned thalis – some traditional, some region-wise and some festive ones. I thought I must take this up as a challenge and incorporate at least a couple of state-wise thalis, in the process learning about a few new cuisines.Little did I realise that planning a whole new menu was such a big challenge!

In the end, I stuck to what I know best, simple everyday stuff, interspersed with something new (for me!) every now and then.

Despite keeping it simple, a lot of effort went into preparing, clicking and writing everything down and I know it would have been impossible for me to cook it all up without the help of my dear ma, bro and even my lovely neighbour! I now really appreciate the kind of effort taken by the members of the previous marathon in preparing all the amazing platters they put up.

I’m starting on the marathon runway today with a basic, simple thali that is standard fare at my place for lunch. It consists of curry (dry vegetable sauté), kootu (south-Indian dal with veggies), rasam (thin tamarind-flavoured soup), rice and curd.

The kootu can be prepared in a number of ways and a variety of vegetables. It can be used as a side-dish for rotis (Indian breads), rice dishes or eaten mixed with rice, depending on whether it has been prepared as a thin gravy or a thick one. I simply love the Keerai Poricha Kootu (Spinach Kootu) the way my ma prepares it. It is so simple to prepare, tasty and healthy to boot.

Today’s simple lunch thali includes Mixed Vegetable Curry, Keerai Poricha Kootu, Tomato Rasam, Rice, Pickle, Fried applam (poppadom) and curd


(Serves 4)


Spinach – 4 cups (chopped)

Moong Dal/Split green gram – ½ cup

Dry red chillies – 4

Coconut (grated) – 2 tbsp

Black Peppercorns/cmin seeds – 10-12

Jeera – 1 tsp

Oil – 1 tsp

Mustard seeds – ½ tsp

Urad dal/split black gram – 1 tsp


Pressure-cook moong dal/split green gram for 2-3 whistles or in a pot of water till soft and mushy

Dry-grind chillies, black pepper, jeera/cumin and coconut into a coarse powder

Cook chopped spinach with ¼ cup water till it is done

Add cooked moong dal and ground spice powder

Add water to adjust consistency to your liking

Cook for 2-5 mins and remove from heat

Heat oil in a small saucepan and add mustard seeds

Add cumin seeds once mustard seeds stop spluttering

Pour seasoning over keerai kootu and serve hot

Click here to see what the other members of BM#16 are doing

I’m also linking this to Srivalli’s Thali Mela!


17 thoughts on “Keerai Poricha Kootu/Spinach & Lentil

  1. kootu sounds yummy and since spinach is my favorite leaf veggie – I eat several times a week – this is a must try recipe~!

  2. Lovely platter Nandini….simple menu does give the most satisfaction. I prepare this kootu exactly the same way…love the color of the kootu..yummy!!!

  3. Pingback: foodiliciousnan

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