Friday, September 17, 2010

Keerai Masiyal (Velvety Spinach Puree)

Another classic South Indian veggie dish - it is very simple but very delicious and healthful too! Keerai Masiyal (literally Spinach Puree) appears regularly for daily meals in South Indian homes as it is considered very healthy since spinach and other dark green leafy veggies contain good amounts of protein and fiber. Luxuriously velvety, good tasting, and mild, I adored it even as a child; what's not to love?

Mild Keerai and some type of spicy Kuzhambu is a classic combination; in fact, Keerai Masiyal is traditionally served along with sambar or other sour and spicy kuzhambus flavored with tamarind. It is a much loved combo in our household. Other greens such as watercress, chard, etc may be used alone or in combination to make masiyal. Young and tender greens make the best tasting masiyal.

And, as far I know, this is the only dish where whole toasted rice is used as a seasoning!!

Nutritional Data per 1/6 of the recipe: Approximately - 23 Calories, 1.4 g Protein, 2.6 g Carbohydrates, 1.3 g Fiber, .8 g Fat, and 220 mg Sodium.

4 - 6 Servings


12 oz. cleaned and washed baby Spinach
1 hot green chili (optional)
1 pinch Turmeric
1/2 tsp Sea Salt or to taste
1 pinch Sugar (optional)

1 tsp Coconut Oil
1 tsp uncooked rice
1 dry hot red chili, broken in half and seeds removed
1 tsp Urad Dal
1 small sprig Curry Leaves, finely chopped


Finely chop the spinach.

Cut a slit in the green chili.

Place the green chili in the bottom of a pan and add a little water (about 1/4 cup) - you don't need too much but just enough to steam the spinach.

Add the spinach on top of the chili and cook until very hot and steamy and the spinach wilts.

Stir well and remove the chili before mashing if you like the dish to be mild.

Add the turmeric, , salt and sugar. Mash with the back of a spoon and cook until spinach is soft and has a creamy consistency - a few minutes more.

Remove from heat and set aside.

Heat the oil and add the rice; cook stirring until rice starts to puff.

Add the chili and urad dal and continue cooking and shaking/stirring until rice and dal are golden.

Stir in the curry leaves carefully as they might sputter and spatter as they come in contact with the hot oil.

Stir the curry leaf mixture into the masiyal immediately and keep covered for a few minutes.

Serve hot with any Kuzhambu or Sambar and rice or roti. Enjoy!!


Jane said...

Thanks for the recipe!!! Love it!

Anonymous said...

Great post, I am almost 100% in agreement with you