Amaranth Greens are popular in India, and a species of Amaranth, known as“Arai keerai” in Tamil, is the ingredient used in making a dish called “Keerai Masial” (literally, mashed greens). This is a good side-dish, consumed along with rice and sambar. It has a high nutritional value with high levels of minerals such as calcium and iron as well as folic acid and other vitamins.
Cooking Time: 30 minutes.
o 1. Arai keerai (Amaranths) : 1 big bunch
o 2. Shallots (small onions): 7
o 3. Green chilies : 2
o 4. Cumin Seeds: 1/2 teaspoon
o 5. Garlic: 4 cloves
o 6. Salt: 1/4 teaspoon
Method: Wash the greens in water, rinsing thoroughly twice or thrice. Chop the greens into small pieces, including the tender stalks. Chop onions, green chilies and garlic.
Boil 1/4 cup of water in a pan and add the chopped greens along with all the items except salt. Covering the pan with a lid, cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. When the greens are cooked, remove from stove. Using a wooden spoon, mash the cooked greens to a smooth paste and add the salt at the end as required. You may use a blender to mash the greens into a soft pulp.
Tips: Greens should not be overcooked as this tends to lower their nutritional value. One has to also be careful with the amount of salt added, since greens have a naturally salty taste because of their high mineral content.
Optional: Fry mustard seeds in a teaspoon of cooking oil and season the masial with the spluttering oil and seeds .