Parippu – Mung Dal Kerala Style


Parippu  literally  translates  to  split beans or dal .  Mildly flavored Mung  dal  curry , usually referred  to  as  Parippu,  is  the  first  course  in a traditional Kerala  Sadya (feast).  This  is  a light  way to start  the  meal   that  winds  its  way  through multiple  courses  of  spiced  and  sweet  dishes. This  dal with a  dollop of  ghee  and  a  crunchy papad is  all you need  to  make a nutritious  and  satisfying  meal .

Just 1  oz of  Mung bean  packs  enough  protein as  an  egg .  It is  also a  source of  many vitamins  , minerals  and  calcium.  Whenever  I sing   the  nutritional praise of a food item , my kids  roll  their  eyes  as if to say “She is  going  to  make  us eat  some  yucky stuff  again !!”.  But this  was  one  meal that  they all loved  from   the  get  go.  Mellow,  silky smooth and  easy to digest .  No  wonder these  used  to be  cultivated  in the  rice paddies  an interim  crop.

This  is  an  easy recipe   as  make . The skinned  mung beans are dry roasted  and   cooked.   Afterwards  it is mashed  and   flavored  with  ground  coconut and  cumin .  That  is  the  basic  parippu   recipe  and  our favorite  kind  as  well.   Spice  lovers  add  a  green chili  or  2  while  cooking  beans,  and  optionally  you can  add   a curry leaf .  No tempering or  any such distractions  here , just  the   wholesome   taste  of  the beans .


Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: Serves 4 to 6



Skinned Mung Beans(cheruparippu) - 1 C (200gm)
Garlic - 1 clove
Turmeric - A pinch (optional)
Salt - 3/4 tsp (To taste)
Coconut Grated - 1/4 C loosely packed
Cumin seeds - 1/2 Tsp
Green Chilli - 1 (optional)
Curry Leaves - a Few
Water - 3 to 4 C


Wash and dry the mung beans.

Heat the pressure cooker and when hot add the dried beans and dry roast till the raw smell goes away. Keep stirring to prevent sticking to the bottom and do not let it brown .

Add 2 C water, the minced garlic (optional) , a pinch of turmeric (optional), and green chilies (if using). Cover and cook till the beans are done , about 2 to 3 whistles .

Grind the coconut and cumin seeds in a blender to a smooth paste . Add enough water , 1/4 to 1/2 C as required, to make a smooth paste.

Uncover the lid and mash the beans well . Add three quarter of the the ground coconut mix and salt to it . Mix well, add enough water for the right consistency . Place the curry leaves and bring to boil over medium heat Taste , adjust salt , add the remaining coconut paste if needed. If adding coconut paste bring it back to boil . Turn off the heat .

Serve over rice with a dollop of ghee.


The optional ingredients are added only as enhancers . Especially turmeric , when tasted the curry should have no discernible turmeric flavor.

Here is a  quick recap of  the  recipe :

This  can be  made   without  the   pressure  cooker  as  well .  It  just  takes a  little  longer .

Add  enough  water  for  desired  consistency.

Add a  sprig of curry leaf ,  bring  to boil over  medium heat .  Taste, adjust  seasonings and  turn off  the  heat .


For an authentic  taste  serve  over  hot  parboiled  “Matta” rice   with a  dollop of  ghee ..

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