Winters brings with it a respite from the scorching hot summers, where temperature drops in and the spirits soar. Along with cosy blankets and quilts it brings with it variety of food, vegetables, fruits and sweets. This is the time when the markets are flooded with lush greens saags and vegetables. Come winters Makki di roti (coarse maize bread) and Sarson da saag (mustard plant) are culinary delights that are savoured in every household of North India especially Punjab .
The prominent names that come to mind whenever Punjabi cuisine is mentioned are tandoori chicken and butter chicken. But one thing that remains literally evergreen, is the traditional Punjabi dish of sarson da saag with makki di roti. Come winter and every Punjabi household, eateries and most roadside dhabas have their fill of this dish which is so rich in iron and calorie.
Ingredients for the Sarson Da Saag
4 cups chopped Fresh mustard leaves
2 cups chopped Spinach
1 cup chopped Bathua ( Wild Spinach)
2 tablespoons Pure ghee
2 medium Onions finely chopped
2 nos of medium tomatoes
2 inch piece of Ginger chopped
6-8 cloves Gralic cloves chopped
4 nos of Green chillies chopped
1 teaspoon Red chilli powder
1 tbsp coriander powder
1 tsp garam masala
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons Cornmeal
Unsalted butter for garnishing
Sliced Green Chillies, Tomatoes and Ginger Julienne for garnishing
Ingredients for Makki Di Roti
2 cups Corn Meal or Maize flour
1 bunch of Chopped coriander leaves
Salt as per taste
1 inch finely chopped ginger
2 nos of finely chopped green chillies
1 teaspoon ajwain
Let’s Learn how to prepare Sarson da saag recipe:
Clean , wash and chop the mustard leaves, spinach and wild spinach leaves and keep aside.
In a pressure cooker place the chopped mustard, spinach and wild spinach along with the ginger, garlic , tomatoes, salt and 2 cups of water and bring to a whistle and let it simmer on low heat for another 10 minutes.
After cooling take away the boiled leaves and keep the water aside. Place the boiled leaves in a food processor along with 2 tablespoon cornmeal and grind to smooth paste.
Now heat 2 table spoon ghee in a pan.Add the finely chopped onion and sauté till light brown. Add green chillies and sauté for a few minutes more. Add the ground mixture , red chilli powder , coriander powder , garam masala and cook for five to ten minutes or till the paste thickens.
Garnish with thinly sliced tomato, green chillies and ginger julliens Serve hot with makki di roti.
Let’s Learn how to make makki di roti:
Mix maize flour, ajwain,chopped coriander, green chillies, ginger and salt in bowl.
Add warm water. Mix and knead to make a smooth dough. Cover With a damp kitchen cloth, cover the dough for 30 minutes.
Divide the dough into equal parts. With your palm, flatten the dough pieces.Slowly roll the dough to a thick and small round on a silver foil or baking sheet to prevent it from sticking to the floor. A small quantity of flour can be sprinkled to stop the dough to stick to the surface.
Place the Roti on a hot Tawa or griddle and cook on both sides. Roti is now ready to be served. Add a dash of butter for a richer taste.