Broccoli with Mustard Seeds and Cumin Recipe

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This is a traditional Southern Indian way to serve broccoli, and it is my favorite way to eat it. One of my college roommates was from India, and she taught me how to make this years ago.  You can use the same technique and spices with lots of vegetables, but broccoli tastes best to me.  It is a quick and easy way to make broccoli that tastes very different from the classic American preparation.

Broccoli with Mustard Seeds and Cumin

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This recipes uses some traditional Indian spices.  I add spilt black gram beans (urad dahl) to saute with the broccoli.  I can find them in my local grocery, but they aren’t really essential to the dish, so you can leave them out if they are hard to find.

Urad Dahl (split black gram beans)

It also uses the technique of popping black mustard seeds, which is pretty easy to do.  First you heat oil in a pan over medium high heat, and when it is hot add the mustard seeds.

Popping Mustard Seeds

and cover the pot with a lid.  The seeds will start to pop and spatter all over if you don’t cover the pan.

Popping Black Mustard Seeds

It only takes a minute or so for the seeds to finish popping, but it gives the dish a nice deep flavor.

Yield: 4

Broccoli with Mustard Seeds and Cumin Recipe

Broccoli with Mustard Seeds and Cumin Recipe
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon urad dahl, optional
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 bunches broccoli, chopped
  • 1/4 cup water
  • salt to taste


  1. Heat oil in frying pan over medium high heat. Add the mustard seeds and cover until they stop popping.
  2. Stir in the urad dahl and cook for about 30 seconds. Then add the cumin and stir.
  3. Add the broccoli and mix it well. Then pour in the water and cover the pan quickly, and lower the heat.
  4. Let the broccoli steam for about 8 minutes, then remove the lid and add salt if desired.


Nutrition facts are estimates.

Nutrition Information:



Amount Per Serving: Calories: 139Sodium: 102mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 7gSugar: 5gProtein: 8g



Hi, I’m Anne!

I love to cook and I want to share my recipes with you. I believe cooking should be approachable and fun, not a chore. I want to make simple recipes using everyday ingredients that you can make again and again, whether it is for a busy weeknight, a summer cookout or a special dessert. Read more...

16 thoughts on “Broccoli with Mustard Seeds and Cumin Recipe”

  1. A lot of times I’ll put ground mustard on my broccoli, but I’ve never seen anything like this before. Great recipe!


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