Saag Vali Khichri

Course : Curry
Serves: 6
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1/2 cup mung beans -- whole
5 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup rice
1 slice ginger -- 1/4 inch
1 pound spinach -- fresh
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
4 teaspoons ghee
1/8 teaspoon hing -- (asafetida)
1 tablespoon cumin seeds -- whole
1 medium Onion
1 tablespoon cumin -- ground
2 teaspoons coriander -- ground
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon pepper -- black
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons butter
1 bunch cilantro

Preparation / Directions:

Pick over, wash, and drain the mung beans. Wash and drain the rice. Wash the spinach well and separate the leaves. Peel the onion, cut in half lengthwise, and slice into fine half-rounds. Put the mung beans in a heavy 4-quart pot. Add water and bring to a boil over a medium-high flame. Cover, lower heat, and simmer two minutes. Turn off the heat and let the pot sit, covered, for an hour. Bring the water to a boil again. Add the rice and the ginger and bring to a simmer. Cover, turn heat to low, and cook gently for one hour. Stir occasionally during this period. Now add the spinach and salt. Bring to a simmer. Cover and cook gently for 1/2 hour, stirring now and then to avoid sticking. Add a little hot water if the porridge seems too thick. Heat the ghee in a skillet over a medium flame. When hot, put in the hing. Two seconds later, put in the whole cumin seeds. Five seconds later, put in the onion. Stir and fry until the onion begins to turn brown at the edges. Add the ground cumin, coriander, and cayenne. Stir and fry for one minute. Empty the contents of the skillet into the rice and bean pot. Stir. Cover and cook for five more minutes. Discard the ginger. Sprinkle with pepper. Serve in individual bowls with some or all of the garnishes.

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