Saturday, December 1, 2012

Sarson ka Saag

Alright, so...  like most Pakistani food, Sarson ka Saag is not very appealing to westerners.  We're all about presentation in the west and Sarson ka Saag is probably one of the most lacking in presentation of all the Pakistani dishes I've made.  That being said, it's just plain amazing to taste.  Possibly one of the most delicious, most simple, and healthiest foods you'll ever eat as an achi bivi.

Funny story behind why I made this...  bumped into a Pakistani grandmother with her daughter and grand-daughter at the grocery store (I LOVE talking to Pakistanis when I come across them because I have so few friends that are Pakistani...and by so few I mean none...).  The grandmother thoroughly enjoyed when I started speaking Urdu (even though I sound like a toddler when I speak "AP KEHSI HAIN!?!??") and proceeded to tell me all kinds of things I didn't understand.  We all talked for awhile as I followed them around the grocery store like a puppy.  "What are you making tonight?!?" I said.  To which she replied, "Sarson ka saag!"  I'd never heard of it and she showed me to the mustard greens.

All that to say, I had to ask my mother-in-law for a recipe.  "What kind of achi bivi doesn't know how to make Sarson ka Saag!!??"  is what that grandmother at the grocery store taught me.  And sure enough, I now know the secret recipe.  ...  Enjoy! :)

First chop up 2 pounds (about 2 bunches) of mustard greens and 1/2 pound (about a small bag) of spinach and wash the leaves.  Then put them in a large pot.

Next, finely dice one onion, one inch piece of ginger, HALF a garlic bulb (not clove, half a BULB - lots of garlic in this one), and 3 green chilis (you can always add more if you're some kind of super bivi...).

Add it to your pot and cook for 2 1/2 HOURS covered on the LOWEST heat possible.

After you've finished watching your Pakistani soap operas (like all achi gori bivis do...), put all the ingredients from the pot into a blender and blend it until smooth.


Pour it back into your pot and add 1 1/2 Tablespoons of corn meal, NOT CORN STARCH!  I know you want to do corn starch, but don't do it!!!!  It's different.  Add about a tablespoon of salt and cook for about 5 minutes.

And finally, make your BAGHAR!   (And as you make your baghar, you must yell "Baghar! Baghar!")  I don't fully understand what Baghar means yet, but I love how it sounds.

To make your baghar, finely chop up another onion, another inch of ginger, and another half a bulb of garlic and fry in about a 1/2 cup of vegetable/canola oil.  Once everything is softened, pour it all on top of your saag in the pot.

Serve with naan or paratha (but really naan because paratha has a lot of oil in it already).  Mama says you can add some butter, but I didn't want a heart attack so I left it out.  <3

  • 2 lbs. Fresh Mustard Greens
  • 1/2 lb. Fresh Spinach
  • 2 Onions
  • 3-5 Green Chilies
  • 2 inches of Fresh Ginger
  • 1 Garlic Bulb
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon Corn Meal (not corn starch)
  • ~1 Tablespoon Salt
  • 1/2 Cup of Vegetable/Canola Oil       


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