1 medium yellow plantain, peeled and cut into ¾ inch dice

1-1/2 cups plain yogurt, preferably Greek-style

1 cup water

½ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 teaspoon chana dal (yellow split lentils or split peas)

1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds

2 dried hot red chiles, halved

15 fresh curry leaves or basil leaves

1 medium shallot, cut into fine slivers

3 thin slices fresh ginger, cut into fine shreds

1 cup mango cut into ¾ inch dice


1.   Place the plantain in a small pan, cover with water and bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat to low and cook until the plantain is tender, 10 to 15 minutes.  Drain and set aside.

2.   Beat the yogurt with a fork in a small bowl until smooth and creamy.  Slowly add the water and salt.  Set aside.

3.   Put the oil in a small deep frying pan over medium heat.  When the oil is hot, add the dal and stir until it just starts to turn reddish.  Add the mustard seeds.  As soon as the seeds begin to pop, a matter of seconds, add the chiles.  Stir once and add the curry leaves.  Stir again and add the shallot and ginger.  Reduce the heat to medium low and stir and fry until golden, about 2 minutes.

4.  Add the spice mixture to the yogurt and stir to combine.  Fold in the diced plantain and mango and serve at room temperature or cold.

from Amanda Hesser, The Essential New York Times Cookbook

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