Sunday, April 26, 2009

Chana Saag

being the educational capital of India, everyone had in their friend’s circle a group of out station students who had come to for a better education, especially during their college years. Of course choosing my group of friends to hang out with proved that no amount of education can improve poor judgment. Most of my out station friends were as good in the kitchen as Maninder Singh in his early years with the bat. On the positive side, you’d always have a group ready to go on a culinary adventure. Although, these kids mostly had their list of staples they’d visit and order the same thing day after day. On Deccan Gymnkhana, behind Karachi Sweet Mart and a few waves short of being immersed in the Mutha river, there was restaurant by the name on Purab. A basically non-descript restaurant that served Punjabi as well as South Indian foods. Purab was a favourite of one of my friends and he had a standard order—Paneer Bhurji with 3 rotis. I remember sitting across the table and watch him eat the same week for weeks at a time. Enough to make you never want to eat it again, but that never affected him. Purab had the standard Punjabi menu. Although I avoided most things with Palak in it, the waiter once mistakenly brought me Chana Saag instead of plain Chana. And much to my surprise it was not only edible, but quite delicious, too. Ever since, I have used Chana Saag to help me get my much-needed serving of greens.

1 can Chickpeas (cooked)
2 bags Baby Spinach
1 large Onion finely chopped
2 tsp Tomato paste
1 tsp Garlic paste
1/2 tsp grated Ginger
1/2 cup heavy Cream
5 Green Chilies chopped
1 tsp Turmeric
2 tsp Garam Masala
2 tbsp chopped Coriander
Salt to taste
3 tbsp Cooking Oil

In a pot heat the oil on medium heat and add garlic, ginger and chilies and stir
As they start to splatter, add onions and stir and allow it to cook till golden brown on the edges
Add tomato paste and coriander and allow it to cook for a couple of minutes
Add turmeric and garam masala and mix it thoroughly
Add spinach, stir, reduce heat and place lid on the pot
Keep stirring occasionally even after spinach has reduced completely
Remove from heat and allow it to cool
Once cool blend the cooked spinach with heavy cream
Pour it back into the pot and add chickpeas
Allow it to simmer for 20 min on medium heat with the lid on
Serve with bread


Alka said...

Yeah I know wht u mean by ordering same food all the time....while we were dating, my Hubby (then Fiance) would always order same butter paneer +Roti+ Mosambi juice and i really felt sick eating same thing at every place.He was(and is) such a picky eater that he hardly ventured out of his comfort zone of butterpaneer
The chana saag is what we call chana paalak in sindhi and we make it almost in same way.
looks lovely ......

dhanadesh said...

and Indy..did u know that Paav never liked the Paneer!!

Adhi Potoba said...

Paav was something else, wasn't he?

Konkani Foodie said...

That looks delicious!! Thanks for sharing the recipe!!

Purnima said...

Tried this wonderful dish..even kids had it without tantrums. Thanks for sharing!

Elizabeth said...

I just picked spinach from the garden. Thanks for the recipe. I often look up on the web for a recipe, but I usually have to combine a couple of them. Especially since I like to grind my own garam masala. Got any specific recipe for yours?

The Moose said...

Thanks so much for this recipe. It tasted just like that which I have had at my favorite Indian restaurants. Delicious!