WV14 ~ Gongura Pappu from Amma

Beatific Butterfly from Backyard
Beatific Butterfly from Backyard
(Of all the transplanted, showy flowers in the backyard, the butterflies are drawn to the wild ones which are known in this part of the world as weeds. Butterflies are precious! So now weeds have become part of the landscape.)

Today is Vara Lakshmi Vratham, an auspicious day on which Goddess Lakshmi Devi is celebrated with fasting, Pooja and neivedyam. It’s customary to share the Lakshmi Devi amma blessings with family and friends, and I am glad to share this day with you Net friends.

Neivedyam for the Pooja:

Semiya-Saggubiyyam Payasam
Alasanda Vada
Chintapandu Pulihora (Tamarind Rice)
Sona Masuri Annam
Gongura Pappu
Chayote Kura
Brinjal-Jaggery Pacchadi
Coriander Rasam
Biyyam and saggubiyyam vadiyaalu

My Meal Menu:

Fasting in the morning.

Has ended the day with an early meal -small helping of each item from the Pooja neivedyam.

Cooking. Pooja and meditation

In retrospect:
Great day! Calming cooking, peaceful Pooja in the morning hours.
Met good friends and had pleasant time in the evening.

Generous Gongura from Backyard
Gongura From Backyard

Gongura Pappu from Amma

The gongura seeds I had planted in March are now thriving healthy plants. The generous gongura didn’t mind when I plucked some mature leaves for the Pooja neivedyam menu today. There are several ways to prepare gongura pappu, and the following recipe is from my amma. I thought it’s a great way to pay homage to her on this auspicious day through this favorite vantakam.

Ingredients and Preparation:

Preparation happens in two steps.

Step 1:

Toor dal: 3/4 cup
Fresh gongura leaves – 6 cups, tightly packed
Indian or Thai variety green chilli – 8, chopped to tiny pieces
Red onion or shallots – chopped to chunks, 1 cup
Turmeric – 1/4 teaspoon

Take the above ingredients in a pressure cooker. Add two cups of water.
In a mortar, add a garlic clove and 2 teaspoons of coriander seeds. Pound to coarse paste. Add this paste to the ingredients in pressure cooker. Mix. Close the lid and cook until everything has become soft, particularly the toor dal.

Step 2:

Salt – 1/2 teaspoon or to taste
Peanut oil or ghee – 1 tablespoon
From masala dabba: Following ingredients for inguva(asafetida) Tadka:
a sprig of curry leaves
4 pieces of one-inch, majjiga mirapa(dahi mirchi)
1/4 teaspoon of urad dal
a pinch each – cumin, mustard seeds and hing (asafetida)

Add salt to the cooked dal in pressure cooker. With a pappu gutti (wooden whisk), mash the cooked ingredients to fairly coarse paste like. Remove the dal to a bowl or vessel.

In a small pan, heat the peanut oil or ghee. Add the tadka ingredients in this order, from big to small: curry leaves, dahi mirchi pieces, urad dal, cumin, and mustard seeds. Continuously stirring, toast the ingredients to golden. When mustard seeds make pop sounds, sprinkle the hing. Stir for couple of seconds. Immediately add this fragrant tadka to the cooked dal. Mix well and cover with a lid so that the flavors and aroma of hing tadka are thoroughly absorbed by the pappu (dal).

Serve the gongura pappu with rice or roti. The blissful combination is the old classic: gongura pappu and freshly cooked, hot Sona Masuri rice with some ghee and vadiyaalu on the side. Heaven!

Gongura Pappu
Gongura Pappu in Vadiyam Vadi on Muruku Peetam ~ For Meal Today

© Recipe and Photos Copyright 2009 Indira Singari.


76 Responses to “WV14 ~ Gongura Pappu from Amma”

  1. preeti says:

    Abba, gongura mokkalu enta bagunnayo! Naaku 2 mokkalu vunnaayi. Vaatine appudappudu oka padi aakulu kosi murisipothanu. Mee mokkalaki naa disti taguluthundi 🙂

    Indira, this last photo reminds me of your famous pappu mudda-vadiyam photo from old blog. And also the other famous murukku with tea photo. Those two were enough for me to keep coming to your blog for so long. I feel the actual mahanandi-ish flavor in your blog today! 🙂

  2. DK says:

    I am going to buy some fresh gongura leaves next time I see it in my local market. I am yet to try these leaves(!!) Every time I want to – I see some wilted leaves and it discourages me! I am hoping for some fresh ones tomorrow when I do my usual grocery!

  3. rashmi says:

    happy varalakshmi nombu…

    wow… nice garden…
    can u share with us.. were can we find gongura seeds here in US

  4. smitha says:

    I agree with preeti, those two photographs… hmm i used to watch those pictures in your site again and again…I actually went ahead and made murukku only because I was completly mesmerized by that picture…somehow, please dont mind, but I loved your old site and its format.

  5. Diane says:

    Very happy wishes for vara lakshmi vratham! It sounds like a wonderful, meditative day.

    Here we often have gongura at the Oakland farmers market (although too cool to grow well in my yard), and whenever I get a chance to buy some I make your gongura dal, which I just love.

  6. kalva says:

    lovely recipe.. mom makes the same way

  7. Kay says:

    Beautiful butterfly!! 🙂 I have never celebrated the nombu till now. so, its very fascinating to me when friends mention about it.

  8. Latha says:

    Dear Indira,

    May I request for Athrasalu recipe please? whenever time permits…

    Thank you.

  9. madhuli says:

    Lovely photo of the butterfly….

  10. veggiebelly says:

    That butterfly picture is gorgeous!

  11. madhuri says:

    butterfly pic is so beautiful… wow what a nice menu you have made….i make gongura pappu too but we dont put onions in it..i love gardening… i love ur gonguraleaves grown… sometimes envies me ehehe.. kidding.. love your garden pics indira… I got key limes this time to make ur lemon recipe..and alas! it rained yesday before i could run and grab they all got wet:( and i though t it will spoil even if i try cos it has water in em

  12. Rekha says:

    Hi Indira,
    Gongura pappu looks so tempting. I tried your Vankaya-Alu Pulusu from your old list and it was very delicious, and I posted the recipe in my blog today. Please check if you have time.

  13. aparna says:

    Indira, I was wondering how much weight you have lost by following this carbohydrate free diet.
    What are the positive effects you are seeing with this diet ?

  14. srividya says:

    varalakshmi vratham maa intlo kuda baga ayyindi.whata coincidence..i made gongura pappu too that day.u made lot of items for puja..wow! 3/5/9 items are usually made.we have reddy farms here(an andhra guy has leased a piece of land)from where we pluck gongura leaves. also other veggies we get there.butterfly pic is beautiful!

  15. Gowri says:

    Hi Indira,

    I have been a regular reader since many months. It is very nice! I was wondering if the 2 week no grain diet helped you. Did you lose any weight? I noticed that Kay lost weight but she had meat in her diet. I am a vegetarian and thinking of trying yours.


  16. Nirmala says:

    Wow, rowing weeds for butterflies 🙂 You are a kind soul. The Varalakshmi vratham neiyedyam makes me drool 🙂

  17. Vani says:

    Indira, long time since I came to your blog home. I felt right at home when I came today…wow…what a wonderful garden you are maintaining…all the hardwork is showing…kudos…

  18. prabhavathi says:

    Hi Indira ,
    After a long time, I visited your blog. Varalakshmi Vratamu and gongoora pappu! Many Andhra homes have this pappu on Varalakshmi Vratamu day. Great blog you have with age-old recipes! Vardhillavamma in the sameway!

  19. Lakshmi Venkatesh says:

    Wow! Looks Very beautiful. Never tried Gongura leaves still.

  20. Meena says:

    Hi Indira,
    I have been vising your blog for close to 3 years now and this is the first time I am commenting. 🙂 Anyways, the Indian magazie “Good House Keeping” has listed Mahanandi as one of the top five Indian food blogs. Congratulations!
    Not sure if this magazine is avaialble in the US. In case you get your hands on the August edition, it’s mentioned in the recipe section. The others in the top five are:
    A Mad Tea Party, Sailus food, A Cookat Heart & Eatanddust.

    Keep up the great work. I have tried many many recipes from your site and they have come out very well. Even my picky kids don’t complain 🙂

    Take care,

  21. Priti says:

    Nice photos. Never had gongura pappu. Will try sometime.

  22. veda says:

    wow!Indira!what a coincidence! I bought gongura leaves delivered at my doorstep today thinking i might find something interesting to prepare from ur blog! I will try this recipeand let u know how it turned out!


  23. Chevalier says:

    O/T: I didn’t know whom else to ask, and you guys are my best guess for someone online who would know the answer. Has anyone of you tasted ‘tegalu’ (or ‘tagalu’) – the long brown fruit/vegetable that you get in coastal areas in Andhra and sometimes in Hyderabad. They are roasted on an open fire, tied into bundles and sold. They are about 10-inches long, and have a brown/black skin, but the inside is white and stringy and fleshy. I love them, but they are really an acquired taste.
    What do you call these things in Hindi/English, and where (if at all) can I find them in the US?

  24. R says:

    thegalu are toddypalm related. they are from thati chettu..if you eat “munjalu” in summer then you know thegalu too.

  25. Ranjan says:

    Indira, congratulations on Mahanandi being voted one of the top 5 Indian Food Blogs in this month’s Good House Keeping Magazine, no surprise to me though!

  26. Nirmala says:

    Indira, why such a long silence almost 2 weeks ? Hope you are doing fine.

  27. Desi says:

    We miss you … come back soon!

  28. moi says:

    Hi Indira, happy Indian Independence Day to you and Vijay! It’s coincidence, I suppose, but your butterfly photo reflects the national colors. So does the vadiyam and murukku.

    Congratulations on the recognition in Good Housekeeping magazine that some commenters have mentioned – no surprise, though 🙂 I hope all is well with you – you have been very quiet for a while.

  29. Chevalier says:

    Congratulations, Indira! And thank you, R – I didn’t know if thegalu were from the same source as thaati munjulu (which also I love, but these are generally more popular).

    Any idea what they’re called in English or Hindi?

  30. Akhila says:

    Hi Indira,
    You have been silent for a while. Was expecting a post on Gokula Ashtami.Hope all is well.

  31. moi says:

    Hi Indira, Time Out Mumbai, issue dated Aug 21 to Sept 3, 2009, mentions Mahanandi right on top of its list of Indian cooking blogs (p. 37). Congratulations again!!

  32. Padma says:

    Happy Vinayaka Chavathi!!! Hope you had a great pooja today.
    Hope all is well. Come back soon.

  33. Shoba says:

    Hi Indira,

    Please collect some more awards on my website. Happy Vinayaka Chathurthi to you.


  34. kaberi says:

    Hi Indira akka, here in our town, we hardly find gongura leaves in Indian grocery shops. Can you tell me where did you get gongura seeds? and what it is called in English so that I can search in the farmer’s market or chinese supermarket, please?

  35. Pavani says:

    Hi Indira, Butterfly looks gorgeous. Gongura Pappu is always a favorite for me and i remember the days when we couldn’t find Gongura, i used to cook this dal with sorrel which gives that sour taste. Your picture looks great. I have a gongura picture in my web site too..ofcourse mine is a grown up one.
    I get so much pleasure to see our plants grow every day, wouldn’t you agree?

  36. ms says:

    Hi indira,
    congratulations! Hope you are doing good – I miss your posts too. Come back whenever possible.

    with best wishes,

  37. Uma says:

    Hi Indira,
    Hope everything is well with you. Take care.

  38. veda says:

    Hey Indira!

    awesome pappu! it turned out superb!


  39. Chilli says:

    beautiful photo of the butterfly!! So crisp and clean!

  40. Deepika says:

    Hi Indira,
    I just wanted to stop by to let you know that I love your website and photography. Your recipes are simply awesome and I have just started trying out few. Recently I made idlis and they turned out great. I love your garden and all the different kind of herbs and Indian plants/trees you grow. Thanks for sharing your stuff on the site. I am enjoying. Also wanted to ask if you took any specific photography classes to get the professional shots ? I am also interested in taking some formal classes.

    Thanks again for sharing your recipes and your beautiful garden.


  41. Aparna says:

    Hi Inidira,

    Where are you? are you on vacation? we miss your posts> come back soon.

  42. Inji Pennu says:


  43. deepthi says:

    How do you grow gongura? Can you please give the details of the gongura seeds and where you got them from. Thanks in advance.

  44. Ranjan says:

    Hi Indira, am assuming you are on vacation or may be busy. Hope you, Vijay, Kittaya and all the family are well and hope to hear from you soon.

  45. Sarvani says:

    Hi Indira, I checkout your website for the tasty and yummy looking recipes. But why have u stopped posting them for sometime now? Hope all is well with you. I miss your posts. Hoping to Read new posts from u soon..

  46. Vineela says:

    Hi Indira,
    Would you mind sharing which peanut oil you use.

  47. Evendea says:

    The cooking blog world is insipid nowadays. Both Indira and Sanjay (Vah Chef) are missing in action for more than a month!! Please Please Come Back..

  48. R says:

    Looks like …14 Weeks of Workout Vratam can do anything, especially to food blogging passion. We should help warn our friends not to get so serious about Workout Vratham…they don’t seem to go well.. see now Indira seem to be getting very passionate about workouts now instead of food …
    Is Indira..going to start a workout blog really soon…Please we love your food 🙂

  49. Roopa says:

    Hi Indira,
    Hope all is well! Hope to hear from you soon

  50. Hema says:

    Indira garu,

    We miss your posts. We were waiting to hear from you soon.

  51. JP says:

    Indira…what happened? Any surprise vacations?

  52. Madhuri says:

    Hi Indira , Its been a long time since you last posted. Couldn’t wait to see what’s cooking in your kitchen. Come back soon !!

  53. poornima says:

    Miss you very dearly.Hope all is well.

  54. sreelu says:

    Indira garu,

    Hope all is well with you, miss your post.

    Take care,

  55. vani says:

    hi indira,

    hope eerything is well with you. it has been long time since u posted a recepi for all of us here. happy vijayadashami to you and family…pls come back fast. i am really waitinf gor ur posts…

  56. Kamala says:

    Hi Indira gaaru,

    Wish you a very happy Vijayadashami.

    Take care

  57. Nirmala says:

    Indira, I pray all is well with you. Awaiting your posts.

  58. Madhuram says:

    Dear Indira, hope you are doing fine. I tried this pappu today and it has come out very well. Thank you very much for this recipe. It’s simple yet comforting.
    Take care.

  59. Ranjan says:

    Hi Indira, hope everything is OK, and you, Vijay and Kittaya are all well. Hope to hear from you soon. Miss you, take care.

  60. Suma says:

    Hope you are doing alright and are just taking a break from blogging. Take care.

  61. Indira says:

    Dear friends,

    Belated Shubha Dasera greetings!

    Sorry for the silence. Hoping to get back to Mahanandi by October third week. Take care and keep having healthy and good food.

    Best wishes,

  62. moi says:

    I am so relieved to hear from you, Indira! I hope all is well. Looking forward to hearing more whenever you get back to blogging. Take care!

  63. Ranjan says:

    Indira, welcome back! Just glad to hear you are OK. Look forward to hearing from you later on in the month.

  64. Balu says:

    Dear Indira garu,

    You are like an invisible friend whom we missed dearly for last few months. Hope all is well and it is good to hear from you. Take care


  65. Jaya says:

    Hi Indira,

    Great to see ur response… Can’t wait for u to come back with a big bang….I have been a regular visitor to your website and can tell that I have missed something for a couple of months 🙁 I must admit that I keep visiting ur website on the hopes that I would see a post today !!

    Hoping to see ur post during Diwali :)) Take care

    Keep rocking as you always do – Jaya Raja

  66. A says:

    Mom’s recipes are always perfect:)

  67. trupti says:

    I miss you and your posts! Hope ALL is well with you and family…..take care, sending the very best wishes for all.

  68. catherine says:

    I wish I could buy fresh gongura leaves because that looks amazing

  69. Cilantro says:

    Wish you and your family a very Happy Deepavali! Hope you are doing good. Have`nt seen you in action for a long time.

  70. Ranjan says:

    Indira, Vijay and Kittaya wishing all a very Happy Diwali and Peace and Joy for the New Year. Ranjan (and Chloe and Max)

  71. Raji says:

    Happy Deepavali Indira

  72. Meera says:

    Dear Indira,

    Your receipes are so simple, delicious and homey…I have been trying them for the last 3 years and each one reminds me of home (I am a Tamilian who grew up in Hyderabad)living here in Houston.

    thank you for sharing…amma & appa back in India follow your blog too now! Meera

  73. DesiFoodie says:

    Where do you get gongura seeds in Houston?

  74. Recipemom says:

    such homely recipes! i love it.
    Gongura seeds are amazing

  75. Deepa says:

    Tried this gongura pappu recipe..loved it..I’ve put a photo in my blog

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