As spring turns to summer in the lower-Gangetic plains, people start preparing for the oppressive heat of the months to come. Cooling foods slowly start getting incorporated into the diet to combat the rising temperatures. But perhaps nothing signals the arrival of spring in Bengal than the kalboishakhi—spells of late-afternoon thunderstorms that are localized to the region. One byproduct of this north-westerly cyclone is that it causes a lot of mangoes to prematurely fall off trees. While that is not good news for ardent lovers of this fleshy, tropical fruit, it gives us an opportunity to prepare a rather delightful tok dal out of the unripe, sour, green mangoes.
- 100 g mosur dal
- 100 g kacha aam (unripe mango)
- 15 g mustard oil
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 pc dried red chilli
- 2 pcs green chillies
- 12 g salt
- 38 g sugar
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- 650 g water
- Wash and rinse mosur dal in water. Drain the water.
- Transfer the washed mosur dal to a pressure cooker (or an open pot). Add hot water. If using pressure cooker, one whistle is enough to boil the dal.
- Open the pressure cooker's lid as soon as possible else the dal would go mushy. Beat the dal till the grains are broken (30 seconds).
- Now, peel the green mango. Cut around the seed. Divide into 2-cm-thick wedges. Reserve in a bowl of water to prevent mangoes from oxidising.
- Heat mustard oil in kadai. Temper with dried red chilli, green chillies, and mustard seeds.
- Add mangoes. Add 2g of salt. Cover and cook till mangoes are soft (5 minutes). Stir often. Once done, add the rest of the salt.
- Add boiled and beaten dal. Add turmeric powder and sugar. Stir to mix everything. Boil on medium heat for 6 minutes.
- This dal is supposed to be tangy. Depending on the sourness of your mango, mash some of the softened pieces and add them back to the dal. Boil for 2 minutes.
- Your tok dal is ready. Serve hot with rice and alu seddho.