February 8, 2016
I’ve developed a healthy obsession with whole green Moong beans. So, I decided to swirl them into whole moong chilla, a protein-packed version of the North Indian pancakes. It requires little skill set and make for a very healthy and punchy breakfast/brunch.
I soak the beans overnight, ready to go the next day but they only really need 4-6 hours of soaking. Their nutty, warm flavour is so versatile – not only great boiled and spiced as a bowl of steaming, thick dal, but also rather lovely in steamed, fermented rice cakes (idli) and pesarattu, (instant crispy dosa). My tip for getting your whole moong chilla into a beautiful even shape is to use a dinky egg pan. That way, the batter can’t really spiral out of control, and you end up with a neat pile of stacked pancakes.
Another tip is to use oil spray. I found a blended coconut oil and vegetable oil spray. If you can’t hold of this readymade, just buy an oil spray container and fill it up with your choice of grease. Just be careful handling the bottle as if it goes too greasy outside it’ll slip and slide in your fingers.
Serve these pancakes hot with a chutney of your choice. I whizzed a handful of coriander, natural yoghurt, green chilli, salt and lemon juice to make mine. No recipe, just taste and adjust to your personal preference. Enjoy!
Feeds 4/Makes 12 small pancakes:
Wash the lentils well and leave to soak covered in a cup of cold water overnight. When you’re ready to eat, blend the lentils with their water, another quarter cup of water, the ginger, the green chilli and coriander until smooth. Taste for salt and add to your preference.
Now, bring a small non stick egg pan or frying pan to high heat. Then lower it to a low medium. You want the chillas to cook through and be crispy. Too high and they’ll be raw inside, and too low and they won’t be crispy.
Next, spray/drop oil onto the pan – enough to lubricate it. I used an egg pan, so I used half a teaspoon, then spooned in 1.5 tablespoons of the batter, swirled it around until beautifully circular and cooked for a minute. When the top is solid, spray with another drop or two of oil and flip over for another minute. You can press the chilla gently wit your spoon to help it cook evenly.
Then remove and restart the process until all your batter is used up.
Serve the whole moong chilla pancakes hot, liberally dunked in spicy chutney.