Monday, 17 March 2014

Chicken Saag

if you choose to make this dish, my one and only plea would be not to use supermarket bought spinach in those little bags! it really is worth getting a few bunches of fresh spinach which you can buy from most Asian grocery stores. you can mix and match with a couple of spinach leaves and a bunch of mustard leaves

a very healthy recipe and you just need a bit of yoghurt to add a rich creaminess to it

ingredients (serves 3-4):

sunflower oil
about 3 bunches of fresh spinach, stalks removed and rinsed thoroughly
a large onion, chopped
a tbsp mustard seeds
a knob of ginger, finely sliced
5 cloves of garlic, crushed
3-4 green finger chillies 
a heaped tsp ground coriander
a heaped tsp of ground cumin
a tsp of salt
1 tsp of ground turmeric
2 tomatoes, peeled and finely chopped 
juice of half a lemon
3-4 chicken breasts, chopped into chunks
1 tsp garam masala
2 tbsp of plain natural yoghurt
generous bunch of fresh coriander, chopped


first prepare the spinach by finely chopping it and wilting it by placing it in a pan, on a low heat, with the lid on. it should take around 5 minutes. set aside.
add some oil to the pan and on a medium heat, fry the chicken just for a minute or so on each side to seal. set aside.
heat some sunflower oil in a pan on a medium heat and add the mustard seeds. once they start to 'pop' add the chopped onion and fry for 3-4 minutes
add the ginger and chilli and cook for a further couple minutes
add the garlic and cook for a couple minutes
then add the spices and salt and cook for 3-4 minutes - at this point make sure the heat isn't too high as the spices will easily burn and taste quite bitter
add the chopped tomatoes at this point and cook for 5-6 minutes - the tomatoes should add enough moisture but if it's looking a bit dry just add around 100 ml of hot water
add the chicken and spinach and cook for 15 -20 minutes, stirring occasionally
add the lemon juice and garam masala and stir in thoroughly 
then reduce the heat as low as possible before adding the yoghurt (if the dish is too hot the yoghurt will curdle)
once the heat has been down for a couple minutes at least, add the yoghurt slowly, half a spoon at a time 
cook on this low heat for a couple minutes before adding the coriander 

serve with naan bread or rice 

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