Give spinach and kale a break this week and opt for nutritious beet greens instead. The purple-veined leaves, as well as the stems are completely edible and packed with plenty of nutrition, so don’t ever think of them as scraps and throw them away. I’ve purposely left out the beets in this dish, because it’s easy to find a dish to squeeze chukandar or beets into. This sabzi or Indian preparation is incredibly simple to make and can be mopped up with rotis, as well as rice. I picked these beets from our local farmers’ market (a Kavita Mukhi initiative) in Bandra. It happens every Sunday, 10 AM onwards, opposite St. Andrews Church. If you spot me there, this weekend, come say hi!
Beetroot Stems and Leaves Sabzi
Beet Greens 1 bunch, equal to a bunch of spinach, washed and roughly chopped
Beet stems an equal amount, finely chopped
Mustard Oil 1 tbsp
Onion 1, finely chopped
Garlic 3 cloves
Green chilli 1, slit lengthwise and chopped
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Chilli powder 1 tsp
Cumin powder 3/2 tsp
Rava or semolina 3 heaped tbsp
Heat a tablespoon of oil in a kadai over medium heat and add together the onions and garlic. Cook till translucent. Next, add in the beet stems and sauté this for a few minutes.
Add to this the semolina flour and toss well, then add in the dry spices one by one. Toss again till a toasty aroma wafts out. Toss in the beet greens and a cup of water and cover with a tight fitting lid. Cook this for five minutes and then uncover and stir it. With the lid off, cook it for a few minutes more and stir often to make sure that it doesn’t stick. Check for salt and season, then take it off the heat. Squeeze over some fresh lemon juice and serve.