Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Spinach/Palak Saambaar. (Curry)

Spinach/Palak  Saambaar is a gravy dish. You can have this curry with plain rice, chapatis, rotis, dosa or idli.
Spinach is loaded with minerals and vitamins. Fresh palak leaves invite you to buy them and you think of preparing many dishes using them. Fresh and green Palak leaves are available in the market always. Eating leaves is always a healthy habit that every one knows.
Lets see some benefits of eating Palak/Spinach in our diet.
Spinach is one of the wonderful green leafy vegetable for its wholesome nutritional, antioxidants and anti cancer contents. They are low in calories and fat. They are loaded with soluble dietary fiber and good for weight loss. They are rich in iron and good for producing red blood cell productions. They contain Vitamin A and Vitamin C. and anti aging properties. Spinach leaves are excellent source of vitamin K and it helps in body building. They are also rich in Vitamin B complex and Vitamin B6.They have good amount of minerals like potassium, manganese, magnesium, copper and zinc. They help to control heart rate, blood pressure. Palak leaves are good source of omega -3 fatty acids. It is said that regular eating of palak leaves helps in prevent osteoporosis (weakness of bones), iron deficiency anemia. The soft leaves protect human body from cardovascular disease and cancers of colon and prostate.
I have used Palak/Spinach leaves and some spices to prepare this Spinach Saambar. It is easy to prepare and anyone can try preparing this sambaar.
No onion or garlic is used in Spinach/Palak Sambar.
Things needed:

To Cook
Spinach : 1 bundle

Methi/ fenugrik seeds : 1/4 Teaspoon

To Grind :
Coconut : 1/2 Cup ( fresh and grated )
Red chillies : 4 to 5
Coriander Seeds : 1/2 Tea spoon
Jeera ( cumin ) seeds : 1/4 tea spoon
Pepper pods : 2 to 3 
To Add : 
Tamarind juice : 1 table spoon.
Turmeric a pinch
Salt : to taste.
For seasoning : 
Mustard seeds : 1/4 tea spoon
Urd daal : 1/4 tea spoon
Curry leaves : 6 to 8 leaves
Oil : 1 Tea spoon
Asafoetida : a little

Method :
1.Wash spinach cut into small and cook with little water.Add methi seeds while cooking.
2.Soak tamarind in water and squeeze out the pulp and keep it aside.
3.Grate coconut and grind with coriander seeds, red chilly, jeera and pepper
4.Keep a pan on the fire and put cooked palak, dal and turmeric powder.
5.Add soaked tamarind pulp, salt and mix it well and cook for a minute.
6.Add ground coconut mixture and stir well. Let it boil for 3 to 4 minutes.

7.Shift the Sambar to a serving dish and add mustard sees, urid dal, curry leaves, ingh seasoning.
8.Spinach saambaar is ready to serve.
Note : You can add a potato and any cooked dal to the sambar. You can add little water to the sambar and make it more liquid consistency. Use of onions and garlic is optional. You can also add other vegetables like carrot, beans or any other vegetables.You can use any market bought sambar powder instead of grinding. Use of toor dal and coconut is also optional. You can use moong dal instead of toor dal. Use of dal gives a good thickness to the sambar.
Time : 25 to 30 minutes.
Serves : 2 to 3

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