Green Beans with Coconut or Moong Dal

This refreshing vegetable dish is quick to make and has a crisp, fresh taste. It can be made with either a coconut flake or a moong dal garnish. The basic recipe can be used for several other vegetables. It goes well with plain or lightly flavored rice.
Prep time: 15 min. Cook time: 15 min. Serves 4.

Ingredients:
1 pound green beans, diced into 1/4 inch circles 

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder

2 tablespoons sweetened coconut flakes
Or, 2 tablespoons split yellow moong dal
soaked in 1/2 cup water for 30–45 minutes

Seasoning: 

1 tablespoon oil

1 tablespoon urad dal

1/2 tablespoon mustard seeds

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

10 methi seeds

Directions: 

Green Beans

Green Beans with Moong Dal

First make the seasoning: Heat oil in a skillet. When hot, add urad dal. When the urad dal turns a light brown, add mustard seeds. When the mustard seeds pop, add cumin seeds, and then the methi.

Immediately add the diced beans; sauté till they change color. Add salt, sugar and turmeric. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover tightly and cook till the beans are done.

Mix in coconut flakes, and remove from stove.

Variations:

Use frozen french-cut green beans instead of fresh beans. This reduces preparation time to 1 minute. Do not defrost beans.

Soak 2 tablespoons of moong dal in 1/2 cup water for 30–45 minutes. Add after beans are almost cooked, and simmer with the beans for 3 minutes. Omit coconut flakes.

This recipe can also be used for other vegetables, e.g., carrots, cabbage, chayote squash (good with the dal variation).

Contributed by: Meera Chandrasekhar

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