Greens (Indian Style)

15 May

Green leafy vegetable leaves boiled and then seasoned with a little ghee and spices make a wonderful vegetable side to serve with other dishes. In India all kinds of leaves are used; the leaves of grapevines, cabbages, kohlrabi, radish or turnips, malabar spinach, mustard greens, kales, beets, amaranth, tetragon, collards and spinach. This recipe will work for any leafy green, each has a slightly different taste and texture but all are delicious.

Serves 2-4 Cooking 15min

  • 2 large portions leaves, washed and chopped
  • 2 tbsp ghee, butter or vegetable oil
  • 1 fresh hot green chilli, cored and cut into thin rounds
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 tsp each of fennel seed, black mustard seed, cumin seeds; lightly crushed
  • pinch salt
  • lemon juice
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp garam masala

Wash and pick over the leaves and remove any rough bits, drain and shred finely. Drop into boiling water and cook for 3-4 minutes, the colour should intensify then remove before the colour starts to darken and drop into cold water to halt cooking. At this point the leaves can be frozen. I freeze spinach and other leafy crops in small batches so I can just take out a batch and throw it in the pan.

Put a wide heavy pan on the hob and heat the oil or butter. Throw in the green chilli, ginger, garlic and spices and fry for a minute or so. Stir in the leaves and sprinkle with salted water, cover. Cook for a few minutes until the leaves are tender. Sprinkle with lemon juice and garam masala before serving.


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