My family ate this saag in one of the restaurant here in Toronto and we all absolutely loved it <3. This dish is not only creamy and flavourful but it is also very high in iron and protein. I tried to retain rich green colour of spinach which looks vibrant when served.
Spinach is so easy to find almost anytime during the year. You can also use frozen spinach if you don’t have access to the fresh one. I keep dry chickpeas/garbanzo beans in my pantry. Soak it overnight and cook. Instead, you can use chickpeas from a can if you decide to make it last-minute.
Whenever I make saag with spinach, I don’t like the raw flavour of onion. To avoid that, I cook onion with spinach while I blanch spinach. Add big pieces of onion in hot water a minute before adding spinach and then add spinach. When spinach starts to wilt, remove from hot water and directly dip in cold water so cooking process stops. When it cools down, squeeze out water, roughly chop spinach and add to the blender.
I make palak paneer and chole/chickpea curry very often but this time I decided to give a try to the dish we all loved. This combination works very well. This dish scales very high on nutritional value as chick peas are very high in protein and spinach is very high in iron. I also made few changes to make this curry more flavourful. This curry can be eaten with roti, naan or paratha and rice. This recipe serves 3-4 people.
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
1 1/2 cup boiled chickpeas
1 big bunch of spinach/palak
1 big onion
2-3 green chilies or as per your taste
4-5 cloves of garlic
2 tbsp homemade spice blend/garam masala
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp cumin seeds
Ghee (clarified butter) or Oil for cooking
Salt to taste
1-2 cinnamon sticks
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp coriander seeds
1. Dry roast all the spices in a pan until it release flavour, it will take about 2-3 minutes on low to medium heat. When cooled, make fine powder using dry grinder. 2. Wash spinach thoroughly and cut onion in big pieces. In a big pot, heat water, add onion pieces and boil on medium heat for 1 minutes. Then add spinach and boil for another minute. Turn off the heat and removed all vegetables from hot water and immediately soak in cold water to stop the cooking process.
2. In a blender jar, add boiled spinach and onion but remember to squeeze out all the water before adding to blender. Also add garlic cloves, green chilies, lemon juice and blend to a smooth paste.
3. In a pan heat 2 tbsp ghee or oil, add 1 tsp cumin seeds. When cumin seeds stats to change colour add boiled chickpeas. Cook this on medium heat and add 2 tbsp masala (spice blend). Cook for 2-3 minutes until water almost dries out and kitchen is filled with the aroma of all the spices. Then lower the heat.
4. Lowering the heat before adding spinach will help to retain the colour. Now add spinach paste, salt and water to adjust the consistency. Simmer for 2-3 minutes on low heat. Turn off the heat and move the pot away from heat. You don’t need to cook this dish for long because spinach is already blanched and it will lose the green colour if cooked longer. Tip: If you don’t like the strong garlic flavour in the dish, you can boil garlic with onion.
6. Serve this flavourful, dark green chickpeas in spinach gravy when it is hot, try not to reheat as it looses colour every time you reheat. It can be served with naan/roti and rice. The flavour of ghee makes it rich and aromatic. It is absolutely delicious 😛 , a strong flavour of roasted freshly ground spices and garlic makes it very flavourful and adds slight heat. It is very healthy too 🙂 …win win situation 😉 😉 .
I am sure your family and friends will enjoy this dish as we did :). This is an easy and money wise dish for the next party. Try it!!
Also let me know if you have any questions regarding the dish.
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