Monday, January 28, 2008

Sathya's Saag

The following is another of my father's yummy renditions of a popular Indian dish. It is most commonly found in "North Indian" restaurants and with cubes of paneer - Indian Cheese and therefore called Saag Paneer or Palak Paneer. Some good friends of mine always ask for me to make this one. Enjoy!

What's in it:
  • 2-3 tbsp organic canola oil
  • 1-2 tsp brown mustard seeds
  • 1 big handful of cilantro (fresh coriander leaves)
  • 1 inch of peeled fresh organic ginger
  • 2 cloves organic garlic
  • 10 curry leaves
  • 2-4 tsp cumin
  • 2-4 tsp coriander
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 - 1 tsp turmeric
  • lime to taste
  • salt to taste
  • 2-3 bunches of fresh spinach or 2 packages chopped, frozen organic spinach
  • 1 big organic onion
How it's done:
  • Chop onion into small cubes
  • Wash cilantro and chop leafy part (discard the stems)
  • Wash and dry curry leaves
  • Chop or press garlic
  • Grate or puree ginger
  • Heat the oil in a pan (you can eliminate this step for a healthier saag)
  • Add mustard seeds (these can be dry roasted, without the oil)
  • Mustard seeds will heat and eventually start popping
  • Add onion, ginger and garlic when mustard seeds start to pop
  • Let the onion cook until it starts to turn clear
  • Add cumin, coriander, turmeric and garam masala.
  • Allow spices to cook with onion until the onion is completely cooked (completely clear)
  • Add spinach
    • If using fresh spinach, allow to cook until tender
    • If using frozen, allow to defrost and heat up
  • Once spinach is cooked, add cilantro
    • You can blend this mixture in a food processor to make smooth or keep it as is
  • Add lime and salt to taste
This goes well with a nice organic brown rice seasoned with cumin seeds or a nice spelt tortilla in place of a chapati.

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