Vendaikai/Okra Fry and Fenugreek/Methi Leaves Gram Dal Kootu – Lunch Thali

Today i m posting a normal day’s Lunch Thali Menu. This thali might be the daily menu at many South-indian home.  We are Rice-eaters and we love to have 2-3 accompaniments with Rice.  Spinach is regularly included in our diet atleast once in a week. Some go the market to get their spinach fresh, but some of them like my mom have Spinach vendors, who come daily to our door-step and deliver us Fresh Spinach.  Amma used to give order for different variety of spinach to them a day before so that they can bring her that week. Lucky me i have tasted most varieties of spinach as a child and also during my pregnancy.  But now, being here in UAE, we get only limited variety of spinach, Methi/Fenugreek leaves and Palak being more famous. 
Today’s Lunch Thali Menu Vendaikai/Okra/Lady’s Finger Fry, Methi/Fenugreek Leaves Kootu with Gram/Chana Dal,  Toor Dal/Paruppu Rasam and Radish/Mullangi Sambhar and ofcourse Curd/yoghurt i forgot include that in the thali.

Ingredients for Okra/Lady’s finger/Vendaikai Fry
1/2 Kg Okra/Lady’s finger/Vendaikai 
1/2 tsp Red Chili powder
Salt to taste

1-2 tsp Oil
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp Chana/Gram Dal
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 spring of curry leaf
hing a pinch


  • Wash and Pat dry Okra/Lady’s Finger/Vendaikai with a kitchen towel. Chop into 1 inch pieces.
  • Heat Oil given under tempering in a non-stick pan. Splutter mustard seeds, add chana/gram dal, turmeric, hing and curry leaf.
  • Saute till the dal turn brown. Add the Chopped Vegetable, Give it a toss and saute for 2-3 minutes. 
  • Add Red Chili powder and Salt, mix well.Cook in a Slow flame until it is done.
  • Stir/Toss frequently to avoid burning of the vegetable. It will take about 10-15 minutes for the Okra/Lady’s finger to roast. 
  • Serve Hot as an Rice accompaniment.

Ingredients for Methi/Fenugreek Kootu with Gram/Chana Dal
2 Medium-sized Bunches of Methi/Fenugreek Leaves
1/2 Cup Chana/Bengal Gram dal
2 nos green chili, silted lengthwise
1/4 Cup of Freshly grated coconut
Salt to taste

To Grind
1 tsp Corainder seeds/Dhaniya
1 and 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds/jeera
1 tsp Black pepper/Milagu
1/2 tsp Chana/Bengal Gram dal
1/2 tsp Tuvar dal/Pigeon Peas

1-2 tsp Oil
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp  Black gram dal, dehusked
2 nos red chili, broken into pieces
1 tsp of shredded ginger
hing a pinch


  • Soak Chana Dal/Bengal Gram dal in Water for 15 minutes.  Remove the root part of the Fenugreek/Methi leaves, Clean and Chop the leaves. After the chopping you might get 3 Cups of loosely packed leaves.
  • Take the ingredients give under “To Grind” and grind it to a fine powder.
  • In pressure cooker, add the methi/fenugreek leaves, Dal, Chilies, Coconut, Ground Powder, Salt and 2 Cups of water. Pressure Cook for 4-5 whistles. 
  • When the pressure releases, churn it using the back of the laddle. 
  • Heat oil given under tempering, splutter mustard seeds, black gram dal, broken chilies, and hing. Saute till the dal turns brown and Pour it over the Kootu. Garnish with shredded ginger.
  • Serve as an Rice Accompaniment 
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Sending this to Thali Mela, happening @ Cooking 4 all seasons, Event by Srivalli