Kootu is a traditional dish from the state of Tamilnadu, spinach curry is yet, another healthy side dish recipe for a complete meal. Though its variations are made throughout India. It is nothing but a semi solid curry made with cooked lentils and some vegetables. In all traditional Tamil meals served in weddings or restaurants, it is common to find any one type of kootu. At homes, people make kootu along with white rice and some papad, or pickle. Since it has veggies and lentils, it makes a complete meal when served with rice. The good thing about kootu is that even kids enjoy it without realizing the vegetables that are added within.
The kootu as such is thicker than the usual dal preparations. I recently shared palak dal recipe. It has more lentils and water to bring it to a thick liquid consistency. However kootu will have lesser dal and will be semi solid.
- Arai keerai / spinach 1 bunch
- Lentils / Bengal gram dal 1/2 cup
- Salt as needed
- Garlic cloves 7_8 no.
- Tomatoes 1
- Onion 1
- Cumin seeds 1 tsp
- Greenchillies 1 or 2
- Tamarind paste 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder a pinch
FOR TEMPERING :
- Mustard seeds 1/2 tsp
- Curry leaves
- Whole red chilli
- Oil 1 tsp
- Wash and rinse spinach in a plenty of water. Drain the water and keep aside.
- Wash and Soak Bengal gram dal.
- In a pressure cooker add Bengal gram dal / lentils, onion, tomatoes, green chillies, Cumin seeds, Turmeric powder, garlic cloves.
- Add spinach. Pour a cup of water. Pressure cook for 3_ 4 whistles.
- As pressure released check the consistency. The curry should not be runny. Excess water in a curry will change the texture and taste.
- Mash the dal and spinach with the spoon or with the help of hand blender. Both the spinach and dal combines and it makes a semi solid curry.
- Heat the curry by adding salt and tamarind pulp.
- Tampering: heat a spoon of oil add mustard seeds once it crackle add red chilli and curry leaves. Tadka is ready add to the spinach curry.
- Spinach curry/ Keerai kootu goes well with rice and chappati.