Memories of the places where you grew up is mostly associated with the food that you grew up eating. Having grown up in a small town, I have had the luxury of eating the local produce. I consider it as a luxury because you get fresh, clean and a variety of greens and vegetables almost everyday. The street opposite to the Chennimalai road exit of the Kangayam bus stand will be filled with women , mostly elderly selling fresh greens every morning and late evenings. They come from the nearby villages with the fresh produce. They sell for a very nominal price. For 10 rupees, your bag can be filled with the greens and vegetables that will save you from spending some thousands on the medicines. They bring it to the doorstep too; not only greens but also banana stems and flowers. My mom makes greens in different ways and she makes sure it is used in our everyday meals. Kadaintha keerai and poriyal are my favourites. Kadaintha keerai or Keerai Masiyal is a mash of specific greens named Thoiyakeerai, Kuppa keerai and Mulakeerai in Tamil with very few ingredients. You can use amaranthus or spinach if you don’t have access to the mentioned greens. The greens are cooked in coconut oil and that gives an extra flavor to the dish. I am sharing here my mom’s recipe and the pcitures are from her kitchen that I shot during my India visit last year.
What you need
- Greens or keerai – 2 bunches
- Green chilies – 3
- Coconut oil – 4 tsps
- Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
- Shallots – 6
- Separate the leaves of the greens from the stalks and wash them thoroughly 2 to 3 times in water.
- Bring water in a pot to boil. Add green chilies to the water and add the greens.
- Cover and cook until the leaves are wilted and cooked. Keep it aside.
- In another pan, heat coconut oil and add cumin seeds. Then add the sliced onions and saute until the shallots become transparent.
- Now add the cumin,shallots and required salt to the cooked greens. Mash them together with a wooden laddle or pulse it in mixie for 2-3 times.
- Transfer it a serving bowl. The dish is best when had with hot rice.
- Adjust the green chilies according to your spice tolreance.
- Just pulse in the mixie for couple of times and don’t grind too much that it becomes a puree.
- I found this link useful to find the English names of various greens – Priya’s Virunthu
Hope you liked the post. Have a good weekend everyone!