Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Chuvanna Cheera Mezhukkupuratti / Stir-fried Red Spinach




The wonderful varieties of spinach available in T.N had always surprised me. Most of them are available through out the year and the best greens restricted to the summer. A few of them are Arai keerai, Mulai keerai, Siru keerai,  Pulicha keerai, Venthaya keerai, Manathakkali keerai and Vallara keerai.
The widely available varities of cheera (spinach) in Kerala are always mainly, Chuvanna cheera, Pacha cheera  in those road side vegetable shops other than the home grown greens.

Surprisingly I had not seen this Chuvanna cheera or Red spinach anywhere in TN all these years and had wondered whether it cannot be grown here. I had come across the Pacha cheera /Green spinach named Thandu keerai now and then, but never the Red ones!

 During my short visit to ktm, last Christmas, I came to know about the Malayala Manorama delivering seeds to the readers on a weekly basis. Lucky Me! it was Red spinach and pea seeds for the week. When I carried the black tiny seeds home to T.N  I still had doubts whether they would survive in the red soil.

I prepared 2 pots; layered with sand mixed with organic manure and red soil. The seeds were sown and Yeah! I screamed with delight to see the young healthy red plants popping up in less than a week!!



The first harvest was done in a month and a half and the second and third harvests in the following months. As soon as I got back from my holidays I could see the bed ready for the fourth harvest. When I cleaned and chopped the leaves I realised the yield had been better than the previous ones.
And hence I decided to make Mezhukkupuratti, cooking the leaves bringing down the quantity to the dining dish, in a nutritious, guilt free and  flavourful way.



Here's how I prepared it,

Red spinach / Chuvanna cheera / Sigappu thandu keerai- a big bunch
Small onions - 7-8 nos, chopped
Green Chillies- 1-2 slit lengthwise
Oil- 2 tsps
Mustard seeds- 1/4 tsp

The Red spinach is cut across the stem, a few inches above the root.The bunch is washed well in running water to remove sand and then chopped fine, the stem as well as the leaves.Keep this aside.

Heat oil in a large wide kadai ( I use iron wok), splutter mustard seeds, sauté onions and green chillies for not more than 10 seconds and transfer the chopped spinach to the kadai. Sprinkle water and close the kadai with an appropriate lid. Lower the flame between sim-medium.
Open now and then to check the spinach cooking and sprinkle water if needed. Remove from fire once cooked (when the stems turn soft).

Serve hot with rice and curry.



26 comments:

  1. Chuvanna cheera is my favourite, Bharathy. I love thoran made with it.....have blogged about it too. I am surprised you don't find it at your place.....it was commonly available in Chennai.

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  2. we get these greens a lot here..love this simple stir fry wid greens..yummy

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  3. Healthy and delicious stir fry. First time here and a love space you have.

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  4. Lucky you home grown greens .. thats absolutely yumm dish..

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  5. First time here dear !! u have excellent blog with nice collection of recipes !! Happy to follow u !!

    Fry looks so healthy and delicious !!

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  6. Wow.. you grew them at home!! Lucky you!! Love it. I just found few green ones growing in my apartment yesterday and was jumping to get it harvested at home :)

    Lovely pics :)

    Your stir fry looks yumm.. We make it similar way but add few garlic pods and grated coconut to it. :)

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  7. Hi bharathy, juz loving this one very much. I like ur varied collection of recipes very much....happy to follow u for more recipes dear!!!

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  8. Very healthy and tasty looking recipe. Great preparation.

    Deepa
    Hamaree Rasoi

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  9. Healthy recipe and good to know its homegrown. We have had it in Hyderabad too but never saw them In Chennai.

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  10. Not a big fan of cheera!!It is commendable though that you grew it at home!!

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  11. There's nothing like being able to grow your own veggies and then plucking them at the right time and making something truly comforting and yummy :) The pics are lovely too

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  12. Wow home grown greens, thats fantastic, simple stir fry looks fabulous..

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  13. hey Bharathy..just recently discovered the pleasure of home grown leafy greens..they r so fresh n tasty..tho i dint grow them..it's nice to use them.. ;-) nice clicks as well !

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  14. That is pretty. Mom used to make it too, love the color :)

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  15. Love your garden..Nice to know about it...Lovely clicks...Thanks fir sharing...

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  16. simple & healthy stir fry that too harvested in own garden makes special..

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  17. Home harvest looks awesome... Nice and simple recipe and looks delicious :):)

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  18. OMG you grew them at home...sure must be tasty

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  19. Wonderful stir fry Bharathy, good that you harvested at home, me have done this in my childhood back at home. Lovely clicks,esp loved the chopped spinach click very much!

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  20. An ardent hater of leafy vegetables, I never liked to eat cheera when mom used to make thoran or mezhukkupuratti with this… now I am trying my best to incorporate this in my diet ;) ;) …home grown cheera kandittu oru cheriya kothi thonnunnu :D

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  21. Home grown greens always sounds too good and is so fresh..lovely stir fry..we too make this at home.

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  22. I love this ..we call laal bhaji ...can eat daily ...do almost same as yours...ur r so lucky to have them at home :)

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  23. Looks supercool. I have never tried this before.

    I have an award waiting for you at my blog http://desizayeka.blogspot.com

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  24. Thanks for sharing this healthy recipe.Its my favourite.

    Loestrin

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  25. ooh.. this is one thing we don't get very often here. really love the taste of chuvanna cheera. what all are there in ur garden now?

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