Sunday, April 29, 2007

Red chard-aloo sabzi, stuffed parantha, palak kadhi and palak-matar-gajar sabzi: JFI greens and WBB

Its spring time, folks. Green is the color everywhere :). Even when its not spring, green color and greens grace our kitchen prominently and very rightly so. Packed with minerals and fiber, they symbolize flavor and health packed in one. So, it no surprise that this month's featured ingredient at JFI is GREENS :). JFI this month is being hosted by Indira (Mahanandi, the founder of JFI) and joins hands with Nandita's Weekend breakfast blogging WBB. I am excited, for i love greens and myself very keenly use greens in breakfast.

I had been wondering for many days as to which greens should i choose for my entry! its really a tough choice, i love them all. Equally confusing was which recipe should i use the greens for! Greens are so versatile that you could dish out a whole meal with greens: soups and starters, main course.....ah! the choices seemed endless. I decided therefore to just head for the grocery store and pick out the first bunch of fresh greens that came my way :) That easy :)). and that green was the pretty, gorgeous looking red chard :). That made it even easier! I use red-chard in Indian cooking in every way possible. And then i also thought to cook something with whatever greens were there in my fridge :). Palak or Spinach was the first thing that i found. Today, i'll share these very simple recipes. So lets enjoy the green cooking: Red chard-aloo sabzi and parantha, followed by palak-kadhi and palak-matar-gajar sabzi.

For the red chard-aloo sabzi, we need:

  • 1 bunch red chard (rainbow and regular chard also do equally well)
  • 2 small potatoes
  • 1 small onion (chopped finely)
  • 1/2 tsp. jeera/cumin
  • Turmeric (a pinch) and red chilli powder (to taste)
  • Salt to taste
  • Garam masala (to taste)
  • 1 tsp. oil

Wash and chop the red chard. Keep the stalks, one can use them to make baked munchies. Wash, peel and chop the potatoes. In hot oil, splutter the jeera and then saute the chopped onions. At this step you can add one small roma tomato (chopped) if you wish to. Now add the chopped greens and potatoes and stir. The huge mass of chopped greens is gonna' become very small when you cook them :). Add a pinch of turmeric and red chilli powder and stir again. Add salt, stir on high heat for about 4-5 minutes. You don't need to add any water, the greens have plenty of water. Cover the pan and cook on low heat till done. Garnish with garam masala and serve hot with phulkas, paranthas or rice n' daal combo. The sabzi looks very pretty with the red and green hues gracing the platter......even the potatoes assumes a pretty red tone.

Did i mention that this is one of the favorite sabzis of my dear friend Golden Girl :). I served this sabzi with chapatis and Masoor daal, cooked in Bengali style (recipe coming up, and that is a favorite of another very dear friend, MD).

But hold on, this is also supposed to be about breakfast, weekend breakfast! so, we aren't done yet :)). And what do we make for breakfast-my favorite, paranthas :)). Paranthas with what, you ask. How about using some of Mom's wisdom and using this delicious sabzi as a filling for paranthas :). Moms love to make stuffed paranthas out of sabzis left over from dinner, and they also know that this surely is one way in which their lil' ones would have their vegetables and greens.

For stuffed paranthas:

Make the dough with whole wheat, salt to taste, ajwain (Carum) and water. Rest the dough for 15-20 minutes. Use the sabzi we prepared (or for that matter any dry sabzi) to make stuffed paranthas, using the two layered style :). Make the sandwich of rolled-out pooris like shown below, dust with flour and roll into a nice parantha. Cook on hot griddle/tawa: i usually fry with a lil' oil or ghee. But the low fat option of just cooking it as a chapati is always there. Enjoy the paranthas with masala chai, achaar, dahi, raita or just by themselves :).

And i see folks, you are all thinking that i am repeating myself.....kadhi again!! for JFI!! how could i not blog about this-it tastes so amazingly good.....palak, amaranth, chard, cilantro.....koi bhi patta chalega ji (any leaves are good)! So, here goes:

Palak kadhi:

  • Chopped greens (i used a 9 ounce pack of baby spinach)
  • 1/2 onion (chopped long)
  • Ginger (chopped, to taste)
  • 1 small tomato (chopped, roma tomatoes are good for this)
  • 1 and 1/2 cup buttermilk or beaten curd (preferably sour)
  • 2 and 1/2 tbsp. besan (gram flour)
  • /2 tsp. each of jeera and dhaniya (cumin and coriander) seeds
  • 1/4 tsp. each of methi-dana (Fenugreek seeds) and kalonji (Nigella seeds)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp. oil
  • Turmeric and chilli powder
  • 1/4 tsp. Garam masala

So, lets heat the oil, spultter the seeds: first the cumin-coriander combo fllowed by kalonji and methi-dana. Saute the onions till golden brown and the saute the ginger. Add the chopped spinach and tomatoes and stir till the greens are cooked a bit and reduce in volume. (Meanwhile, we also prepare the besan-curd mix. Beat the mix well to prevent any clumps). Add the turmeric, chilli powder and salt to the cooked green, stir again and cook for 5 minutes more. Now reduce the flame and slowly add the besan-curd mix. Continue stirring to prevent any curdling. Add more water (1/2 cup or so) and bring the kadhi to a boil. Cook on low heat, the kadhi should become a lil' thicker. Garnish with garam masala and serve hot with rice or your choice.

We are still not done, we have to make the palak-matar-gajar (spinach-peas-carrots) sabzi.
We need:

  • Chopped spinach (16 ounce pack of spinach)
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 1 big tomato (chopped)
  • 1 carrot (chopped)
  • 1 cup peas
  • 1/2 tsp jeera (cumin)
  • Turmeric and red chilli powder to taste
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp. melted ghee
  • 1/4 tsp. garam masala
So, to make this quick sabzi, heat ghee, splutter jeera and saute onions. Add tomatoes and stir to cook them till soft. Add the turmeric and red chilli powder. Stir and add the chopped greens. Stir again and add the chopped carrots and peas. Add salt and stir again. Cover and cook till done. Add 1/4 tsp. garam masala and serve hot with phulkas, paranthas or daal-chawal. Makes a great filling for wraps, sandwiches and what else, paranthas :)).

So, be good and have your greens :)


Reena said...

Muse, It is raining JFI greens in all blogs:). I just posted mine then visited 2-3 and every post is aboutt greens:). I love red chard and your stuffed parantha ka jawaab nahin.

Asha said...

Absolutely delicious M!! I am saving the whole page girl.

You and Trupti came out with Red chard for JFI,great dishes.Thanks M.

Watch out more Punjabi dishes on Wednesday!;D

trupti said...

Wow much GREEN!! you're certainly eating healthy! I am esp. interested in the Palak-Gajar-Matar delightfully simple...and you use GHEE in the baghaar! :)
All looks good...and yes, that Masoor daal...lovely ji lovely :)

Great minds do think alike...hehhehe..and I used cornflour in my palak-chard panner too...authentic, hainaaaaaa???


Anita said...

You sure went to town with the greens! That kadhi definitely looks interesting. and you make the best paranthas and rotis. I am leaning the aloo-palak way myself...UP kind. Though I love my Punj version too!

Richa said...

that sure is ultra nutritious stuff, dear! everything looks so YUM, where do I start. Will go for the paratha with dahi, or may be with tea, or may be with raita or ..... too many choices too little time :-) you are so right @ making paratha from left over subzi & mom makes it from dal as well :) kadhi vadhiya ne', mauja hi mauja

Sia's Corner said...

oye musical... u r really going green and making me go green with envy;) envy coz i wish i had them for bf/lunch/dinner:) what a fabulous post. i am bookmarking this:)

Nupur said...

Everything looks sooo good! I just had breakfast but I'm getting hunger pangs after reading this do you do it every time, Musical dear? :)

musical said...


Yup, its raining greens, and i am not complaining :)). Loved your Kapil Dev style, aapka bhi jawaab nahin.


Thanks (blushes) really looking forward to the Punju khana at your place. i know first i had the beet brainwave with you and now chard with Trupti :).

musical said...


Loves the Palak-chard-paneer recipe, sweetie. Do try that sabzi, for all its simplicty, it tastes really yummy, especialy with the lil' ghee :). Punjus love their ghee ;). and that Masoor daal, totally the way MD makes it (except probably for the addition of ginger).....loved it, the daal and the feelings. and yes, great minds think alike :)).


Yes ji, i use greens rather frequently in my cooking :). That kadhi originated in my thoughts y'day! and it turned out really good. and thanks, you just paid me a great compliment!! actually makes me very emotional. I guess i've gotten atleast a bit of her parantha making skills.....she dished out the most amazing paranthas!! am waiting for your UP style aloo-palak, that combination rocks!

Sandeepa said...

Hey Musical
Spring time with all the greens. Liked the sabzi and the Palak Kadhi looks so tempting.
You roll out parathas like a pro, han ?

musical said...


You made me so happy by talking about that daal parantha! Love them :). Aa jao ji, paronthi te chai, ho jaye! But if you want to try one thing, try that kadhi-i had it y'day for my dinner, as a soup!! maujaan hi maujaan, thode dahi-bhalle vi lai aao, te naal nylon dhokla, party ho jaye :).


Look who's talking! (Changes one to Hindi movie hero): " Tab tum kahan thi, jab lunch time ke aas-paas main Sia's Corner aayi thi, aur bhookh ke maare bura haal ho raha tha-Jawaab do, hai ko jawaab!!" ("Where were you when i visited Sia's Corner during lunch time and was having hunger pangs, got any answers"). Drop in for lunch/dinner anytime.


You are really sweet :). Happens to me all the time when i visit the hot stove :). especially when i am surfing during lunch time! words like kathi rolls, thalipeeth etc etc really make me drool :)

musical said...


Try the kadhi, am sure you'll like it. and thanks sweetie, am touched by your compliment regarding i said, all my Mom's love and blessings!

Manjula said...

Red chard! Thats great. Love to cook with variety of greens. Its green green everywhere..Me too did a lot of greens shopping over the weekend.

musical said...


Shake hands :). Its so much fun looking at the lovely colors especially for greens like chard (red, rainbow and what not) and forms.....i invariably end up picking a bunch or two of fresh greens, and not just mint or cilantro :). What did you make btw (goes to Dalitoy).

bee said...

those are killer parathas. it's ages since i ate a good paratha, 'cos the flour available here is so stale and flavourless.

i would love to try that kadhi.

musical said...

Hey Bee:

Thanks dear! About the flour, i have tried many but the one i liked best is "Lakshmi brand" followed by "Sujata". Lakshmi brand has this nearly desi atta kind of flavor and texture. Most other brands were very disappointing! But you are right, the fresh milled atta flavor is something else!! Do try the kadhi. my recommendation: have it as a soup with some crispy girlled sandwich or atleast a crisp toast :).

Coffee said...

My MY!!!!!!! Are all the greens from the market in your kitchen???!!!!! Loved your kadhi..... and the palak gajar matar subzi is too cool!!!!! So simple to make and quick as well!!!! Too good girl!!!!! Great going!!!

musical said...


Exciting isn't it, that palak-kadhi and i agree with you about sabzi :). I know, it does sound like i only shopped greens :)). Thank you dear, hope that your cold and sinus problem is alright now. Lots of hot kadhi and rasam for you, sweetie :).

Sig said...

wow girl, talk about going green... :) U have made a whole feast here with greens, it took me so much time to come up with a measly soup!!! The spread looks amazing!!

musical said...

Hey Sig:

Thanks a ton (blush, blush) come on, that soup was WOW!ask me. i heart cream soups sweetie, it made me drool and has induced some serious soup cravings :-D.

bee said...

i'll ask my gujju grocer to get lakshmi brand. he has some weird brands, which are full of stale maida. even the insects don't like the flour.

musical said...

Yes Bee, please do that-its the closest to whole wheat atta that i have seen here. i remember the shock i got when i saw the so called "chapati ka atta" which was nothing but maida!! The rotis tasted like bhaturas!! Your last line cracked me up :-D

Manisha said...

You done it again! I love the looks of that kadhi. And there's no doubt that your parathas are simply the best!

You and Anita re really working hard to dispel a lot of myths about Punju food! To me, Punju food began and ended with onion-tomato-ginger-garlic sauce! I'm loving this!

This kadhi will be made very soon. I'll be back to tell you what I thought of it!

swapna said...

Hi musical
that looks fantastic..!!!What a healthy post!!

musical said...


Thanks a lot :). Let me know how you like that kadhi.


Thanks a lot. i love greens.

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

Ur blog is very nice.....Sabzi is looking YUM! stuffed paranthas is a different one... i realy want to try it out....Palak kadhi...O i love it .....all ur recipes are great....

Nina said...

Hi ,
love your blog ,tried your potatoes and swiss chard it came out yummy had it with hot rasam and rice and gave it a south indian touch!! Looking forward to more delicious recipes from you.
Thank you

musical said...

Hey Sukanya:

Thanks dear, for the warm words (blush).


You already tried it! Wow! You are quick :). Thank you dear.....i have this sabzi with rice n' rasam or even with thayir sadham sometimes and it tastes very good.

DEEPA said...

hey musical ..this si the first time i am into your blog ..looks great ..excellent pics and recipe too good ...thks for sharing

musical said...

Welcome to by blog Deepa, i am glad you enjoyed the contents. Thanks a lot.

Roopa said...

Wow ......... this is my first time here from JFI! All the recipes looks very delicious!

Kajal said...

Hi musical,
Great entry for JFI.
Your red chard aloo curry looks yummy…………….
Great stuffed parantha, you invite me on those days when you prepare some delicious dish.
Now your palak kadhi way, I will definitely try it.
Palak+matar+gajar is good combination for curry.
Thanks for sharing.:)
Good job.:)

Vani said...

Came here thru Trupti's website. What a lovely blog u've got here! Love all the recipes I've read so far. My must-try list is gonna get longer! :)

musical said...


Thanks for stopping by and also for being so generous. I hope i can bring more inetersting recipes and thoughts.


You are always invited, dear. I promise i'll make your favorite paranthas :). Yup, try the kadhi, i am sure you'll like it. I am going to try your kadhi next. And thanks dear, i am flattered :).


Thanks a ton, dear. Am so happy that you enjoyed reading the posts here. Do try your picks and lemme know how you liked them.

Manisha said...

Reporting on the palak kadhi, ma'am. A+, cent per cent, full marks. Very very good! Will make again and again and again!

I made it using 16 oz baby spinach. Yes, lots. I thought I had tomatoes, I was wrong. So I decided to do without. But my new mirchi powder turned out to be so potent that I had to add a can of diced tomatoes. I didn't present this as a kadhi because the Pavlovian response would have been to think sweet. No-one asked for sugar! It was so good! I didn't make anything else. Just this spinach kadhi, some rice and some naans. I don't use coriander seeds as much as I do coriander powder so the taste of the seeds was new to Medha. She asked for the English name, Hindi name and Marathi name. And was amazed to find out that this is the cilantro seed. She doesn't like cilantro as a garnish but loved the taste of its seed!

It was a great meal, Musical. I am torn between freezing the leftovers and having it for lunch tomorrow. Thank you so much!

musical said...


Super sweet of you :). Really, am glad you and your family enjoyed it. Means A LOT to me. i understand, the sweet kadhi :) i make that sometimes. i am in love with all forms of kadhi! Ah! and coriander-cilantro business :). Great, Medha loves this-i love it too. Thanks Manisha, for sharing this bit.....Have a good night.

Sushma said...

The red chard is in season it seems..everybody is blogging about it...

loved the array of recipes..

musical said...


Yup it is :) So take the dip and dish out something delish with red-chard, i am waiting :)

Anonymous said...

wow...what a great feast...great meal... paranthas and khadi looks mouth-watering...thanks for sharing

musical said...

Thank you Dilip ji, for dropping by and the generous words.

shilpa(aayisrecipes) said...

Ohh thats a great spread. I could not manage to cook anything special for JFI this time. You have done a great job.

musical said...

Thanks a ton Shilpa :). i know sometimes it gets too hectic and even though you really want to participate, you can't help it.....Am glad you like the recipes.

Linda said...

A veritable symphony of greens, Musical! I loved gazing at each one, and you've got me thinking about growing some red chard this spring :)

musical said...

Thank you, Linda. Red Chard is good, just get some :).

Pelicano said...

HEY!!!! I just made your palak kadhi this morning and had it for lunch- it was enjoyed by my guest and I very much! Delicious.

musical said...


Thanks, dear! this is why i love blogging!

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Anonymous said...

But i thought we are not supposed to use tomatos with any leafy subji esp palak.