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Munagaku Kandipappu Kura : Moringa leaves cooked with Yellow lentils

Written By Praveena Gudipati on Thursday, May 11, 2017 | 10:53 PM

After the Kale Chutney recipe, here is another super food recipe from my blog. It's Munagaku Kandipappu kura /Murungai Ilai (Drumstick leaves/Moringa Lentils curry). Moringa leaves are cooked with parboiled yellow lentils in this recipe and  no its not a dhal. Now a days Moringa became a health food trend and is getting available in powder form or in many other weird forms :-). call me old fashioned but I like to eat my veggies not drink em :-). 

I love leafy vegetables. I might have already mentioned that several times on my blog. I would cook em at least couple times a week. Along with many Indian leafy veggies I also use Kale, Chard abundantly in my cooking and sometimes collards. I like leafy veggies in any form but few of my fav's are Spinach chutney, this Moringa toordal curry and Swiss chard Pulusu .

Moringa tree or drumstick tree as you know is very common to find in India. The vegetable from the tree, drumsticks are used in Indian cooking. Drumsticks are delicious veggies and Drumstick sambar is a famous South Indian delicacy. Also the leaves of the tree are edible. These tiny leaves are used in making curries. My grandma used to make this recipe a lot. I don't remember Mom making it but she makes the same recipe with Spinach. Pairing up leafy veggies with lentils is not only nutritional but they help in easy digestion of protein.Try my other recipes Cabbage Chanadal curry, Anaheim chili Moongdal curry, Spinach with Toordal curry. Serve these along with Rasam and the meal will be delicious.

One fine day I told my husband to get Moringa leaves from the grocery store.  He did that except he got a enormously huge bunch. When I say huge it was really huge. It took forever for me and my brother to pick the leaves. Finally when the picking was over I realized I can't use it all in one day. So I made this curry with a part of it and stir fry the rest and kept it in the freezer for future use. 

Moringa is considered one of the super foods for it's nutritional and health benefits. Moringa leaves are rich in Vitamin A,Calcium,C,Potassium. Has anti diabetic, anti inflammatory, anti aging properties. . They have hormone balancing properties too. Now I see several stores selling Moringa Powder. To  know more of Moringa benefits pls click here: Moringa

Four (4)
Total time:
45 minutes (Including 20 minutes soaking time)

Ingredients (I use US standard measuring; 1cup=8oz=250ml):
  • 1/2 cup Toor dal (Kandipappu/Yellow lentils)
  • 4-5 cups Moringa leaves (Munagaku/Drumstick leaves)
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1.5 tbsp chili powder or adjust
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp Mustard seeds 
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 2 Red chillies

Munagaku Kandipappu Kura Recipe

  1. Soak Toor dal (Kandipappu) in warm water for at least 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile Pick Moringa leaves and clean using water.
  3. Now take lentils in a pot and fill water to cover.
  4. Cook lentils till they parboiled ( cooked but still have a bite). You can tell that by looking at the lentils. If lentils are changed in color they are done. If you still see a white circle in the middle they need to be cooked little more.
  5. Now drain water from lentils and leave em in strainer.Save this water to make Rasam. This water is nutritious.In the picture you can see that I soaked Tamarind in the water. I made Rasam using that water.
  6. Take a vessel and add 1 -2 tbsp oil to it. 
  7. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves and red chillies. Let em splutter. Add chopped garlic. Fry.
  8. Add Drumstick leaves. Cook till they are soft and come together.
  9. Add turmeric, salt and chilli powder.

  10. Mix well. 
  11. Add drained lentils.
  12. Mix gently.
  13. Cover and cook for couple more minutes.
  14. Turn off the stove. Serve it with Rice.

Tips and Variations:

  • You can make the same recipe with Spinach. 
  • Adjust spices accordingly.
  • You can use more or less lentils according to your preference.


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