Gongurra known as Pulichcha Keerai in tamil and as Sorrel leaves in English happens to be very rich in Iron and including it at least once a week in our daily diet is very good for our health. This recipe is my Amma’s which she learned when she settled in Andhra after her marriage. I love to have this with hot steaming rice for lunch. There actually happens to be two varieties when it comes to Gongurra. One is with green stems and the other one is with deep red stem. Make sure that you choose the latter as it is much more tastier and cooks faster too especially when you are making this thokku. This recipe is very simple and easy to make yet very delicious.
Gongurra Pappu / Gongurra Dal
Gongurra / Pulichcha Keerai / Sorrel Leaves – 1 bunch
Moong dal / Paasi paruppu – ½ cup
Green Chilies – 10
Shallots / Sambar onions – 10
Garlic pods – 2 to 3
Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
Salt – to taste
For the Seasoning:
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
Whole dry red chilli - 3
Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
Oil – 1 tbsp
Pick, clean and wash the gongurra leaves. In a pressure cooker, place the gongurra leaves, moong dal, green chillies, shallots, turmeric powder, salt and garlic pods along with a cup of water. Pressure cook for 3-4 whistles or until the dal turns soft, tender and easily mashable between your fingers.
If you have a Kalchatti like the one showed in the picture above, transfer the contents of the pressure cooker into the kalchatti.
Do the seasoning / tadka by heating a pan with oil. Add mustard seeds, when they splutter add cumin seeds, coriander seeds, dry red chilli and saute till they change color and gets well roasted. Pour the seasoning or the tadka to the cooked mixture in the kalchatti and mash well with the wooden pappu gutthi. In case you do not happen to have one like the above one, you can also do this in a blender.
The consistency should be smooth. You should not be able to make out either the leaves or the dal. The seasoning should have blended well with the dal and gongurra. Transfer to a serving bowl.
How to serve: Pour a ladle of this gongurra pappu over hot steaming rice to which a dash of ghee has been added. Mix well and enjoy with pappads or with this spicy hot Potato Fry.
You can also use toor dal instead of moong dal. Replace regular onions with shallots if you don’t have at hand.
As the sorrel leaves happens to be a bit sour you might need to add to add more chillies but adjust according to your spice requirement.
You may leave out the whole coriander seeds while doing the seasoning.
Normally greens will require less salt. So before pressure cooking add less salt. You can always check the salt while mashing and adjust.