As soon as winter appears, we begin to see lots of greens in the market. Sarson (mustard) is very popular right now. It is a rabi crop, and harvested typically from December onwards.
The next photo is of a less well-known winter green: bathua. It is a wild relative of the spinach family, and can be used just like spinach in curry dishes. It is sometimes combined with sarson to make saag (a sort of pureed curry eaten with parathas). One of the popular dishes made with this is bathua raita.
Spinach (palak) is also part of the regular winter diet. Today we made palak bhajiya (spinach fritters), and I remembered to pull out my camera and click some photos before we ate it all!
|Step 1: Fresh spinach leaves, cleaned and stems removed.|
The batter is of chickpea flour, salt, chilli powder, cumin and coriander.
|Step 2: Heat vegetable oil in a kadai (Indian wok). Dip leaves in batter until |
it is fully coated. The batter has to be thick or it won't stick.
|Step 3: Make sure the oil is sizzling hot before you pop in the leaves. |
To test the oil, you can drop a little bit of the batter and see if it
immediately sizzles and rises to the top.
|Step 4: Ta da! Palak bhajiya served! |
It has to be golden and crisp before you take it out of the oil.
Serve hot with spicy green chutney and tomato ketchup. Or with a sweet and sour date-and-tamarind chutney. Sprinkle a little chaat masala for added tang; and make sure you have hot masala chai with it! It's the perfect antidote for a winter evening.