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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Palak Methi Chaman

Palak-Methi Chaman
 Palak(Spinach) and Methi(Fenugreek) are two of my favourite leafy vegetables. Though we Indians usually kill them by over-boiling or over-frying, if done right, the dish can not only taste and smell good,the refreshing green look is a treat for starved eyes.

Starved we have been – with the partner contracting Jaundice, and the cooking options becoming severely stunted. However, it took me the better part of two months to realise that tasty need not necessarily mean unhealthy. So, armed with a couple of leafy vegetables and a twist to the original Tarla Dalal’s Palak Methi Chaman recipe, this dish originated and turned out to be lip-smacking.

Preparation Time:

35 Minutes

Ingredients:

  1. Palak (Spinach) - Half a bunch

  2. Methi (Fenugreek Leaves) - Half a Bunch

  3. Potato - 2

  4. Peas - 1 Cup

  5. Cumin Seeds - 1.5 Tsp

  6. Asafoetida - a pinch

  7. Ginger - about 2"

  8. Green Chillies - 2

  9. Turmeric Powder - 1/2 Tsp

  10. Chilli Powder - 1/2 Tsp

  11. Coriander Cumin Seed Powder - 1 Tsp

  12. Garam Masala - 1 Tsp

  13. Corn Flour - 1 Tsp

  14. Milk - 1 Cup

  15. Sugar - 1/2 Tsp

  16. Salt - as Required

  17. Olive Oil - About 2 Tsp


Methodology:

  1. Grind the ginger and green chillies together to form a paste.

  2. Mix the Corn Flour with water to form a thin paste.

  3. Wash both the leaves thoroughly and blanch them together.

  4. Drain and keep the water aside.

  5. After cooling, grind the leaves into a smooth paste.

  6. Meanwhile, shell the peas and cut the potato into medium size cubes. Boil them with about ¼ tsp of salt and minimal water.

  7. Heat the oil in a pan. After a minute, add cumin seeds. When they start to cackle, add asafoetida and the ginger-green chilly paste.

  8. Add turmeric powder, red chilly powder, Coriander-Cumin Seeds Powder, Garam Masala, Salt and Mix well.

  9. Add the Methi-Palak  (Fenugreek-Spinach) Paste, and the boiled potatoes and Peas.

  10. When the gravy starts boiling, add corn flour-milk  solution and stir till the gravy thickens. Add Sugar and stir on low flame for about two minutes.

  11. Garnish with Coriander leaves and serve.


Notes:

  • Corn flour, a recent discovery for me, is a boon for gravies. The consistency it gives is perfectly appetizing. More importantly, there is no change in taste (unlike rice powder).

  • The residual water of blanching the greens can either be used while making the gravy or can be made into a simple soup by adding salt and pepper. (I did the latter. It tasted great!).

  • Blanching involves boiling the leafy vegetables for about 5 minutes on high flame and about a minute or two (tops) on low flame. Anything more and the leaves will turn soggy and lose the color.

2 comments:

Dips said...

Its unfortunate but everytime I encounter the word Chaman, I only remember a Hyderabadi calling out to an incompetent person! :D
By the way - recipe sounds great. But if you boil the paste with potatoes etc., there is no real need to blanch the veggies. At least I dont blanch the spinach before palak paneer!

Archana said...

Is the color still retained without blanching though? We do a Palak-Dal with rice, which is very dull green since Palak is allowed to be boiled for a longer period of time.