Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Moolangi(radish) tovve - A dal recipe so comforting you will forget it has radish

Do any of you have experience carrying a (cooked) radish dish in lunch box to school/college/work? I did that once, had made mulangi(radish) huli at home and took it to work with rice. Honestly, I was amazed that until then I had not realized that a lunch box could stink, am glad I opened the lunch box when no one was around and immediately closed it. Came back home famished, heated up the dabba food and ate it licking my fingers :-). Nammamma though never carried any lunch boxes knew something about unleashing a radish dish from a closed vessel, how else do you explain the strange coincidence in all the years she made my lunch box, never once it had the radish huli or gojju.. Moms are really smart.

But, I do like radishes, I eat them both raw and cooked. Nammamma's typical moolangi dishes would be huli (Yumm, I have to blog about it soon), gojju and the huli tovve and I like all three of them. I had not seen red radishes until I traveled across the seven seas (well, just pacific ocean) and fell in love with those cute little bulbs in the farmer markets. They are not as spicy/pungent as the regular radishes and work extremely well in salads. I trim the ends and use them in huli/sambar for a fragrant side dish :-).

Tovve is a quintessential kannada dish you will find on the typical festival or wedding menu, though radish doesn't fare as a favorite on certain days, it does make a wonderful tovve that goes well with both rice and rotis. I like white radish for this recipe because for me tovve is as much about the yellow green color as it is the taste, feel free to use red radishes as substitutes and try this simple recipe for a delicious meal.
What do you need to make radish tovve? 
1 cup moong dal/hesaru bele
1 medium sized white radish - washed, peeled and chopped into bite size pieces
1.5 Tsp salt (adjust to taste)
2 green chilies - slit length wise
handful of fresh cilantro
1/2 Tsp turmeric
2 lemons/lime - juice extracted
3 cups of water
For vaggarane/seasoning:
1 Tsp cooking oil
1 Tsp mustard seeds/saasive
1 Tsp cumin/jeerige
1/2 Tsp asafoetida powder
3-4 curry leaves

How do you make radish tovve? 
  • Wash the moong dal in 2 changes of water and bring it to boil in a vessel.
  • Add the radish pieces and green chilies when the moong dal starts to boil and cook them for about 10 minutes on medium heat. 
  • About 5 minutes after adding the radish pieces, add finely chopped cilantro and let it boil with the dal & vegetables. 
  • When the dal & radish turn soft to touch but hold their shape well, add salt and turmeric, switch off the stove.
  • Prepare seasoning - heat oil in a small pan, add asafoetida, mustard and cumin, wait for the mustard to pop and switch off the stove. 
  • Add curry leaves into the hot seasoning and pour all of it into the tovve. 
  • Add the lemon/lime juice and mix well.
  • Serve hot or warm tovve with rice or rotis, we had ours with chapatis. 
  • Be generous with lemon/lime juice in the tovve recipe.
  • Adjust tovve consistency to be thick. 
  • Make sure you do not cook the dal too long, it just has to be soft, you want to taste and feel the soft dal with every bite. 


NamsVeni Pothas said...

this tovve is sounds very healthy and mouthwatering too. my GD likes mullangi recipes very much. thanks for the nice dish.

sashi said...

Nagashree, when do I add chillies?. I added with the radish. Please confirm.

Nagashree said...

Sashi, add the chilies along with the radish pieces, this breaks the flavors into the dal well. I have updated the post :-) too. Hope you guys enjoyed the tovve.

Anonymous said...

Will the moong dal cook in such a short time? I always thought it needed to be pressure cooked!

Nagashree Ravi said...

@Anonymous, yes moong dal cooks faster than other dals. Also texture of cooked dal in tovve is such that it is not pasty but well cooked. I prefer cooking it on open stove so I can control the amount of cooking. If you soak the dal for about 15mins before cooking, it cooks up even faster. I use yellow split moong in this recipe. Hope this helps