Theme: Course Wise Meal from any State – Maharashtra/ Lunch Dishes
Dish: Usal-Misal Pav
After 2 days of easy one-pot Maharashtrian dishes (Masala Bhath & Vaal Khichdi), today’s dish is slightly elaborate and spicy. It’s a great dish to entertain as well. I remember one of our dear Marwari friend serving this for dinner and it was probably one of the best tasting Misal Pav I’ve ever had. Being a rice obsessed South Indian, I was initially skeptical if that sprouts curry with bread on the side is going to fill me up — but I was really surprised how filling and delicious that combo can be.
I referred to quite a few blogs for the recipe, but in the end I stuck with Sangeetha @ Kothiyavanu’s recipe. Her pictures were gorgeous and I loved her step by step explanation. This dish is a little time consuming with quite a few steps involved, but the final dish is well worth the effort. I’ve tried to explain the process as clearly as possible.
Traditionally this dish is made with sprouted moth beans, but I used a combination of sprouted moth & moong beans. First step is to cook the sprouted beans with some spices to make the Usal. This Usal is then cooked in a spicy gravy and topped with farsan, sev, chivda etc. to make Misal, which when served with pav makes Misal Pav.
I used store bought Goda Masala for convenience, but if you want to make your ow, then here’s the recipe. Sangeetha’s post also has the recipe for Goda Masala. You can also substitute with good old garam masala.
Prepare the Sprouts: Heat 2tsp oil in a pressure cooker; add onion and cook until it turns translucent. Next add all the other ingredients and mix well. Add 3-4cups of water and cook for 3-4 whistles or until the beans are completely cooked. If not using a pressure cooker, then cook in the pan for around 30 minutes.
Make Spicy Gravy: Heat 1tbsp oil in a pan, add onions, ginger and garlic, saute until onions turn slightly browned around the edges. Next add ground cumin, coriander, chopped tomatoes and grated coconut. Cook till tomatoes turn mushy. Let the mixture cool a little bit. Then grind it to a paste.
Heat 2tbsp oil in a pan, add mustard seeds and once the seeds start to splutter, add the ground masala paste, red chili powder and turmeric. Cook until oil starts to leave the sides.
Now add the cooked beans along with tamarind pulp, goda masala/ garam masala, salt and little water to get a gravy consistency. Usal is now ready.
To make Misal: Top each serving of Usal with farsan, sev, chiwda, finely chopped onions, cilantro and a squeeze of lemon. Serve with Pav or Chapathi. Enjoy!!