Who can resist the aroma and taste of slow cooked Sarson ka saag, an indulgent winter treat that we all look forward to!
You will find many recipes of cooking Saag, some use the pressure cooker, some the microwave (I have shared both types, earlier on my blog) and some recipes that are family heirlooms (like my dadima’s recipe, also shared earlier)
However here I share my fav way of making Saag…
You will need
1 large bunch if Sarson leaves along with its tender stems or danthal
1 large bunch spinach leaves
1 small bunch fresh methi leaves
1 small bunch fresh dhania
4 green chlies
1 whole garlic, peeled
1 1/2 inch ginger peeled
Wash all greens and chop roughly. Peel thick stems/danthal of the Sarson leaves
Now using pulse action of your chopper, process all the above ingredients into a fine mince (not grind)
Then transfer them to a clay pot.
We want the saag to have some texture so do not grind to a smooth paste.
When you place the clay pot on your stove, please use a metal ring in between. This helps protect the pot from direct heat, prevents breakage and extends the life of your pot.
PS: Please read other important tips on use of clay pots at the end of the recipe.
Simmer on low heat till it reduces to a thick mass.
Here slow cooking is key and it takes several hours for the greens to cook down… do not rush.
Next, add 3-4 tbsp of onion tomato masala (made with 3 medium onions and 2 medium tomatoes) ,
a generous tablespoon of butter/malai/cream and salt. Mix to combine.
Using a wooden spoon/whisk, blend the saag till it acquires a glossy velvety sheen.
Mix 1/4 cup makki ka atta with 1/2 cup water to make a thick paste. Slowly add this paste to the saag, stirring constantly.
Heat a tbsp of ghee, add a pinch of hing, 1 tsp of jeera and 1 tsp red chilli pwdr and pour this tempering on the saag.
Garnish with a swirl of butter/cream and some sliced ginger. Serve warm with makki ki roti!
Tips for clay pot cooking
First timers must wash and soak their clay pots in water for 4-5 hours or even overnight. Then before use, rub it inside out with cooking oil.
After first couple of uses, just soak in water for half hour or wash it thoroughly under running water and that should suffice.
You can use your clay pot on your stove or oven.
For stove, do remember to use a metal ring in between for protecting it from breakage.
For use in oven, remember to NEVER preheat oven while using a clay pot.
The sudden change in temperature can make your clay pot crack.
Always put the clay pot in a cool oven. Then switch it on.
Never expose your clay pot to sharp temperature changes as it can lead to breakage. Be it stove or oven, heat change should be gradual.
When you finish cooking, do not put your hot clay pot on a cold surface. Place it on a wooden coaster so it can gradually cool down.
Similarly do not place a hot clay pot for wash under cold running water. Wait for it to cool down and come to room temperature before washing.
- For post-cooking cleaning, soak your clay pot for a few hours in lukewarm water to which a tsp of baking soda has been added, never use dish washing soap! Then gently scrub, rinse and dry.
Lastly it is important to dry your clay pot completely before storage, or it can develop mould.