Spinach In Yogurt Sauce

January 1, 2012

Pachadis are lightly cooked South Indian salads, often involving yogurt. This was my grandmother's recipe, and it remains a feature of my core repertoire because it's so simple and unusual at the same time. This recipe is part of our menu for Sadhya, a South Indian feast.

Yield Makes 6 servings (as part of a large meal) Active Time 20 minutes Total Time 20 minutes


    • 3 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
    • 1/2 small onion, chopped
    • 1 pound spinach, coarse stems discarded and leaves finely chopped
    • 1 small fresh green chile, such as serrano, Thai, or jalapeño, slit lengthwise with stem end intact
    • 2 tablespoons water
    • Salt
    • 1 cup plain yogurt (not Greek-style)
    • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
    • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
    • 1/8 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
    • 10 fresh curry leaves (optional)


    1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a 5- to 6-quart heavy pot over medium heat until it shimmers. Cook onion, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 7 minutes. Add spinach, chile, 2 tablespoons water, and 3/4 teaspoon salt and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until spinach is wilted, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in yogurt.
    2. Heat remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in a small heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers, then cook mustard seeds until they begin to pop and/or turn gray, then add cumin seeds and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until cumin seeds brown, about 30 seconds more. Add curry leaves (if using), covering skillet immediately for a few seconds, then stir spice mixture into spinach mixture. Season with salt. Serve warm.
Cooks' Notes:
•Indian ingredients can be mail-ordered from Kalustyans.com.
•Chile can be removed during cooking when the dish is spicy enough for your taste.
•Spinach-yogurt mixture, without spiced oil, can be made 1 day ahead and chilled. Reheat before proceeding with recipe.

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Nutritional Info

  • Calories120
  • Carbohydrates6 g(2%)
  • Fat10 g(15%)
  • Protein4 g(8%)
  • Saturated Fat1 g(7%)
  • Sodium321 mg(13%)
  • Polyunsaturated Fat2 g
  • Fiber2 g(8%)
  • Monounsaturated Fat6 g
  • Cholesterol5 mg(2%)
per serving (6 servings) Powered by Edamam

Source: epicurious.com