Faux Foodie: Chana Saag

Friends, I f’d up the ginger portion of this dish. I didn’t know how to prep the little beast and I didn’t have a microplane or even a nice emery board to grate it. I ended up grinding it within an inch of its life (skin on!) in an old timey cheese grater (like the metal version of the kind they use at Olive Garden). And this still turned out awesome. Consider this your invitation to make easypies Indian food with me! I’m no adorable blogger-cook. If I can do it, you can do it. Namaste. And Bhagavad Gita to us all.

I lightly adapted this recipe, but my initial inspiration came from an Indian food truck that parks outside my work sometimes. I wanted to try making “the one with the spinach and the chickpeas” because it seemed healthy, hearty and high-kick-y. I bought the spices in bulk because instead of a million dollars, it’s less than $5 (if you’re buying for the recipe). Served it up with brown basmati rice and a small helping of Project Runway. And some white wine I found, already open in the fridge.

What you need:

2 T olive oil
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1 T ginger, grated (Peel the skin off before you do the grating so you don’t end up Googling “is ginger skin poisonous to humans” right before bed, just to check…*it’s not…)
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp garam masala (Indian spice mixture)
2 tsp ground cardamom
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (the recipe says 1/8, but I like my high-kicks high)
2-3 cups chopped tomatoes
2 15 oz cans chickpeas, drained (no soaking overnite for these beans. Or peas. Peasbeans.)
1 lb fresh spinach, loosely chopped

What to do:

Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Throw in the onions until soft. Add garlic and ginger for a few minutes. Mix all the spices together, then add tomatoes and spices to the pot. Cook for 10 mins. Add chickpeasbeans and fresh spinach. Cook for about 10-15 minutes until heated through and your kitchen smells like “Ancient Old World”… or “Indian Truck”. Serve over your favorite rice. Optional garnish: a dollop of plain Greek yogurt.

Chef’s note: While digging through a pile of dusty ginger root at the Nature Mart, I thought — THIS is one of those items that should just be free. It looks like I found it on the floor.

It’s delicious though…!



One thought on “Faux Foodie: Chana Saag

  1. Pingback: Killing time in India. « THIS IS LALA LAND

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