Swiss chard saag

This is a popular savory Indian dish in the winter months. It is made out of spinach primarily. But it can be mixed with mustard greens, swiss chard, and collards based on availability and what you are in the mood for. This mixture is called 'saag'. You eat it with Indian bread: naan or roti, that can be bought from Indian store. It also tastes very good with bajra roti or Afghani naan.


- 1 bunch of fresh spinach (or a frozen chopped bag)
- 1 bunch of swiss chard/mustard greens (or frozen)
- 1 large tomatoes
- 1 yellow onion
- 2 garlic clove
- 2-3 green chillies
- 2 tablespoon butter or ghee
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 bay leaf
- pinch of turmeric
- 1 tsp of red chili pwd
- 1 tsp garam masala (Indian store)
- lemon juice
- cubes of paneer (optional) (Indian grocery store)

Clean all the spinach and swiss chard and or mustard in a colander and place in a big pot of boiling water. Let it simmer for 10-15minutes. Drain the water, and put all the boiled greens in a blender to make a puree and set it aside. Use the drained water (full of nutrients) to help the blender. If you have frozen bags, I would first rinse the contents in warm water in a colander and then directly blend it. There is no need to boil the frozen contents.

Separately blend onion, garlic, chillies, and tomato. Again add some of the drained water to help the blender and make a smooth paste out of this. In the cooking pot, heat the butter, and add the cumin seeds. Wait 30seconds till they become light brown. Now add the pinch of turmeric, red chilly pwd, 1 tsp of garam masala, bay leaf. Stir that around and pour in the onion blend. Let this cook for about 7-10minutes.

Now add in the leaf blend, giving everything a good stir. Add salt to taste and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Add chunks of paneer to the pot. (optional) You can also add boiled potatoes cubes or boiled yam cubes instead. Or a mixture of peas and sauteed mushroom. Lid the pot to cook on a low flame for about 20mins. Periodically stir it around.

Heat the naan/roti to serve with the saag. This quantity should serve 5-6 people. Feel good about consuming loads of this dish because its full of all kinds of goodness for the body.

Health benefits:
If there were such a thing as a vegetable valedictorian, Swiss Chard would bag the title. It has extraordinary concentrations of vitamins: K, A, C, E, B1, B2, B6, biotin, niacin and pantothenic acid; minerals: magnesium, manganese, potassium, iron, calcium, copper, phosphorous, zinc folate, and dietary fibers.


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