Palak Panch Phoran, well i guess nothing by that name exists, but who cares, when i know it shouts comfort food from all corners. I get extra careful about the nutrient values of the food i intake when iam bed ridden or have been advised to take some rest. And on such days meals like this come to my rescue. I just order lots of greens and make anything possible with them. Treat them gently, consume them in their purity, and feel good about eating something good.
On one such days i asked my help to make something with just some spinach, and panch phoran. Panch Phoran, a whole spice mix, famous in begali and assamese cuisine, a mix of fenugreek seeds (or methi dana – मेथी दाना), nigella seeds (or kalonji – कलौंजी), cumin seeds (or jeera – जीरा), mustard seeds (or rai – राई), and fennel seed (or saunf – सौंफ़).
I remember my bhabhi also feeding me something like this with one of her simple assamese meals, and i had fallen in love with it. I dont know if it has a name to it, but i just call it palak panch phoran, it is a perfect accompaniment to phulka and dal, or some masoor dal and chawal on a cold winter evening.
- 1 bunch of Spinach, cleaned, and roughly chopped.
- 1/2 onion, cut into thin slices.
- 1/2 tsp panch phoran, crushed into coarse powder.
- 2 pinches salt.
- 1/2 green chilli, slit length wise.
- 1 clove of garlic, roughly crushed.
- 1/2 tsp Mustard oil for frying
- Thoroughly clean spinach and chop it roughly into not so small pieces, maybe just tear them into halves.
- Heat the mustard oil in a shallow pan, till it starts fuming.
- Add the green chilli, garlic and onions to it, and let it fry for 2 minutes.
- Now add the salt, sugar, and the panch phoran powder, and immediately add the palak.
- Let it fry on medium high flame, and stir it frequently. You will see them wilting almost instantly.
- Don’t over fry them, it will cook even after taken off the flame. LEt it fry for just a minute or more, and let it sit aside for a minute or so.
- Serve it with hot rice and masoor dal, or moong dal and aloo bhindi bhujia with phulkas like i did.