Monday, August 20, 2007

Not quite Sag Aloo: Potatoes & Beetroot Greens with Indian Spices

I've always had a soft spot for Sag Aloo, the Indian spinach & potato dish. I'm not even sure if it's a proper Indian dish, as I haven't found it in any Indian cookbooks I've looked at, but it is served in most Indian restaurants in Scotland and I always ordered it. Few months ago my friend Nenya brought me a cookbook as a present, because it had a recipe for sag aloo inside, and I was happy. Then there was a recipe here and here. I was even happier. But when I finally felt the time was right for making my first sag aloo, there was no spinach in the house. I did have a large bunch of beet greens, however, leftovers from making the Potato & Beetroot Pie. And thus a new dish was born :)

Potatoes & Beetroot Greens with Indian Spices
Serves 2 as a main dish

2 Tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds, slightly crushed
1 tsp cumin seeds, slightly crushed
2 onions, chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 tsp finely chopped ginger
0.5-1 tsp chilli flakes
500 grams potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
boiling water or vegetable stock
250 beetroot greens, chopped roughly

Heat the oil in a medium-sized saucepan over a medium heat. Add mustard, coriander and cumin seeds and fry for about 1 minute to release the spices.
Add onions & garlic and fry gently for about 5 minutes.
Add chilli flakes and potatoes, pour over enough boiling water to cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add beetroot greens, and simmer for another 7-10 minutes, until potatoes have softened and liquid has reduced.



Lydia said...

And this is how wonderful new dishes are born! I love Indian potato dishes -- the potato is such a good carrier for the spices.

joey said...

I love Indian food! :) I have always thought that Indian cuisine has the most exciting vegeratian selection of food ever! For someone who isn't a vegetarian that is really saying something :)

Your sag aloo looks great! Now I'm craving!

DaviMack said...

We will make sure to try some of the "original" when we arrive in Glasgow - 2 weeks from now. :)

Holler said...

I think I would really enjoy that! I love all potato dishes and this looks a good one!

Meeta said...

I Love it when I see non-indians make Indian food. You really have captured this well, Pille

Great Big Veg Challenge said...

This looks delicious.Love the use of beetroot greens

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

And did I tell you I made that beet pie and really enjoyed it!
I always order any dish in an Indian restaurant with spinach and potato

Trig said...

Pille, your saag aloo looks much nicer than the one my dad made the other week. It looks very clean and precise, whereas my dad's was quite bland and didn't allow me to appreciate the spices he used

valentina said...

Well, I have just received beet greens in my basket. I will definititely make some tomorrow.

Pille said...

Lydia - yep, potatoes are great spice-carriers. And cauliflower is probably my next favourite spice-carrier:)

Joey - I've been looking into Indian vegetarian dishes recently and you're right, they variety is enormous!

DaviMack - let see, maybe we can indeed meet up for a sag aloo in Glasgow:)

Holler - I'm sure you would. If you're not sure about beetroot greens, then simply use dear old spinach leaves!

Thank you, Meeta! It's quite a compliment coming from you!!

Great Big Veg Challenge - thank you! PS I made your roasted marrow the other day - delicious! I'll be blogging about it in a few days.

Tanna - you mean the beet & potato pie? I'm so glad you liked it!

Trig - thanks! I do hope your dad doesn't read my blog, or he might get upset with you:)

Valentina - what a coincidence! Hope you'll like this!

Mallika said...

Hi Pille - actually sag aloo isn't very Indian at all and combines two of the world's most bland ingredients!! Yours looks delicious and much more appealing.

James said...

I made the dish for dinner this evening and it was delicious. Thanks for the receipe.

Sankalp said...

Hmm, I'm indian, and I say, Sag Aloo is definitely indian.

Its not found in cookbooks because its more of a home-cooked dish.

Anonymous said...

Good one. I thought of the same idea when I had some leftover beet greens. But I wasn't sure if it would taste good. Then I Googled and found your recipe. BTW, I remember that the recipe they used to make at home called for mustard greens. Beet greens come pretty close to the original taste.

Pille said...

Mallika - spinach is quite flavoursome when seasoned properly, me thinks. And we've got great - and flavoursome potatoes here in Estonia. But they do benefit from adding spices, of course :)

James - so thrilled to read that!

Sankalp - thank you, thank you! Glad to read there some Indian-ness :)

Anonymous - I do grow leaf mustard at home, so will try the recipe again later this year. Thanks for the tip!!