Palakura pappu is a simple andhra style lentil dish cooked with indian spinach and tempered with spices. This is usually served with rice or chapati. In this post I have shared 2 methods to make palakura pappu. The first one is the traditional method made by pressure cooking. The second one is the dry palakura pappu which is cooked in a pan or pot with moong dal.
For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips.
Pluck the spinach leaves and check them for worms. Rinse them well in a large pot filled with water. Repeat rinsing a few times. Drain the leaves completely and chop finely.
Add dal to a bowl or cooker and wash it a few times until water runs clear. Pour 1¼ cups water, green chilli, chopped spinach & tamarind. Cover it. You can also skip adding spinach now and add it once the dal is cooked completely.
If making it in a bowl, place it in the cooker and pressure cook for 3 to 4 whistles on a medium flame. If cooking directly in the cooker, then pressure cook for just 2 whistles.
When the pressure releases, mash the dal and add salt and turmeric. Mix well. Pour ghee to a small tadka pan and heat it. Add cumin, mustard, red chili and garlic. When the spices splutter add curry leaves and hing. Pour this to the cooked palakura pappu.
Method 2 - open pot method.
Rinse dal in a pot and pour ¾ cup water. Cook it on a medium flame until it is almost cooked but not mushy. You can also add in tomatoes and green chilies if you like.
While the dal cooks, clean the spinach. Pluck the leaves and discard the stems. I usually open up the leaves and inspect them for larvae or worms. Wash thoroughly multiple times in a large utensil filled with water to remove mud.
Chop or tear the leaves which ever you prefer to. When the dal is fully cooked but not mushy, add the spinach and salt. Mix well.
While the spinach cooks, heat a small pan with ghee or oil. Add the curd chilies, fry till they turn crispy. Set these aside to prevent burning.
Next add mustard, cumin, garlic, red chili when they begin to splutter add curry leaves. Add turmeric and hing.
Check if the spinach is cooked, then pour the seasoning to the dal. You can add the curd chilies or you can save them aside for garnish. Mix, cover and off the stove.
Palakura pappu is ready to serve with rice or phulka. Squeeze in some lemon juice while serving.