Mugaacha Birda is a gravy vegetable from Maharashtra. It is made using peeled, sprouted green moong and fresh coconut with some simple spices. The method and ingredients used in the preparation of this vegetable are fairly simple. But, the flavour is delicious and it scores high on the health quo too!
Shravan is observed by many in Maharashtra. In this month, Shravani somvaar (Monday) is the day when many such people fast and break their fasts with simple a meal which includes this vegetable alongwith varan, rice and aluwadi (sans onion and garlic).
Mugaacha Birda might seem similar to the Mugaa Shaak prepared by the NKGSB community. But there is a vast difference in the ingredients used and hence the taste too. Both these vegetables have one thing in common though, i.e. the peeled, sprouted whole moong and the use of coconuts.
For more such delicious and nutritious dishes, do take a look at the following recipes too….
3. Usal Misal
Here’s the recipe for the traditional Mugaacha Birda…..
Prep Time : 30 min
Cooking Time : 30 min
Serves : 5-6
- 3/4 cup Whole Green Moong
- 1/2 cup Chopped Tomato (1 Small Tomato)
- 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
- 2 tsp Bedgi Red Chilli Powder
- 1 tsp Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
- 2 tsp Dry Corriander Powder
- 4 tsp Jaggery …. To be adjusted
- Salt to taste
To Be Ground To A Paste :
- 3/4 cup Fresh Grated Coconut
- 2 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 tsp Tamarind
For The Tempering :
- 2 tbs Oil
- 1 1/2 tsp Mustard Seeds
- 1 sprig Curry Leaves (8-10 leaves)
- To make the Mugaacha Birda, we first need to soak the whole green moong in sufficient water, two nights in advance.
- The next morning, rinse the moong well, and drain out all the water. Leave it in a warm place till night, for sprouting.
- At night, once again soak the moong sprouts in sufficient water till the next morning.
- In the morning, you will notice that maximum moong peels have collected at the top of the water and the moong have increased to almost 3 cups.
- Carefully discard those peels from the top and begin peeling the rest of the sprouts. Now, there is a specific technique for this.
- The vessel with the sprouts already has lots of water in it.
- Take an empty vessel. Place in on the platform. Make a cup of your right palm with a slight gap in the fingers and hold it over the empty vessel.
- Pick up the vessel containing the sprouts with your left hand and pour the water from it in the empty one through your palm.
- The peels which have come off, will be collected in the fingers of your right palm. Discard them.
- Pour this water again on the sprouts with a little force. This loosens the remaining peels.
- Repeat steps 7-10 till almost all the peels have come off.
- Whatever little peels are left, can be cleaned individually. Again, if some sprouts have gone into the peels then they too can be cleaned individually.
- Set aside the cleaned moong sprouts till further use.
Heat a saucepan and add the oil for tempering to it. When it heats up, add the mustard seeds.
- As soon as they splutter, add the asafoetida and the curry leaves.
- Immediately add the de-skinned sprouted moong and stir.
- Now add the turmeric powder, red chilli powders and the corriander powder and mix well.
- Add some water to it, almost upto the level of the moong and bring it to a boil on high flame.
- Reduce the flame to low medium and cover and cook for a while stirring occasionally.
- When the moong are half cooked, add the chopped tomato and stir. Again cover and cook further for some time.
- In the meantime, grind together the grated coconut, cumin seeds and tamarind, using sufficient water to get a smooth paste.
- Check the moong. If they are almost cooked, i.e. just a little firmness is remaining, then add the coconut paste, jaggery and salt to taste.
- Give it a good stir, add some water if required to get a medium thick gravy and bring it to a boil again on high heat.
- Once it reaches a rolling boil, reduce the heat to minimum and simmer for about eight to ten minutes, uncovered.
- This will ensure that the coconut is well cooked and the moong too will be perfectly cooked and won’t become too mushy.
- Switch off the flame and garnish with fresh chopped coriander leaves.
- Serve the delicious Mugaacha Birda with hot phulkas or some steaming hot rice and Varan or Daalichi Aamti with the appetising Tival by the side!
- Do serve some Patravade and some Gaajar Flower Taaja Loncha by the side too!
- Finish off this traditional meal with a dessert of Gaajar Halwa or Shevayaanchi Kheer.