Bhaaji(Spinach) and It's Variations (ભાજી)
The bhaaji in this recipe can be combined with paneer, or corn kernels or potatoes, instead of the daal. To increase the creaminess of the dish, add 2 tablespoons yogurt when you add the paneer or other vegetables. Cook the spinach as per recipe, without the daal and add the paneer (cubed and dry roasted on a hot pan) or add steamed or tinned corn kernals or steamed and cubed potatoes at the end.This dish goes well with hot rotlis, bhakris or rice. Fresh homemade, set yoghurt is a great accompaniment.
- Quarter cup Mung Daal (chilka) split mung with husks
- 400 g Fresh medium leafed spinach can substitute with 250 g frozen spinach.
- 2 tbsp Vegetable oil or half oil, half ghee for a richer taste
- 1 tspn Rai (mustard)
- Half tspn Jeera seeds (cumin)
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 2 tspn chilli and ginger paste finely ground
- pinch asafoetida powder
- Half tspn garam masala powder optional
- To Taste Salt
- Wash the daal with warm water and change water 2-3 times. Leave to soak in twice the amount of clean water.
- Finely chop the spinach keeping most of the stalks. Wash in a large container using lots of free flowing water.
- Heat oil in a large pan. A pressure cooker can be used if you want the spinach to be well cooked and homogenous. Add mustard and cumin when oil is hot. As soon as they start to splutter add the asafoetida, then the chopped garlic and then add the soaked daal, trying not to add any of the surplus water.
- Add the ginger/chilli paste and salt. Now add less than a quarter cup water and as soon as water starts to bubble, add the chopped washed spinach, and close the pot. If using open pan stir frequently. With the pressure cooker let it cook for three minutes after the pressure has been attained.
- Add garam masala after the spinach has been cooked and stir well
- Stir and serve hot. The Spinach should drop off a spoon so add water if it is too solid OR let some water steam off if it is too soft.