Swiss Chard Stir Fry (Swiss Chard Paruppu Thoran)

Happy New year everyone 😃
I am going to keep my first post of 2017 simple and healthy by sharing an easy everyday side dish recipe. This is a very simple recipe and works best on days when you just want something with less oil and masala. 
After moving to US I really miss the fresh green leafy vegetables that we get in India. It is really difficult to find really good and fresh leafy vegetables in Indian stores here and the varieties sometimes are limited to spinach and methi. It is only recently that I stumbled upon some good drumstick leaves. Anyhow all of this prompted me to try the local leafy vegetables available here in US. So far I have tried Collard greens, Kale (curly ones and plain ones) and Swiss chard. And I must tell you that amongst these Swiss chard is by far my favorite. Swiss chard is not only delicious but is also rich in vitamin A, K and C. It also has significant content of vitamin E, magnesium, manganese, potassium and iron. 
I always have a bunch of swiss chard in my weekly grocery list. I just love the flavor of swiss chard compared to the other greens. Also it goes without saying that it makes very delicious thoran. You can easily replace the swiss chard in this recipe with collard greens, kale, cabbage, cauliflower or longs beans. I have already shared long beans thoran earlier on my blog (you can find the recipe here) the only difference in this recipe is that I have included split bengal gram (chana dal) and ginger in this recipe. So lets get cooking shall we?

Ingredients:

2 medium bunch of Swiss Chard or 1 big bunch (I used rainbow chard for this recipe you can use any like red, rainbow or green)
1/2 cup of par boiled split bengal gram/chana dal (cooked till al dente, do not overcook)
1 medium sized onion finely chopped
4 – 5 curry leaves
1/2 tsp of mustard seeds
1 – 2 tsp of oil
Salt to taste

For the coconut masala
1/3 cup freshly grated coconut
1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
1 -2 cloves of garlic
1 inch of ginger
1 – 2 green chilies
1/4 tsp of turmeric powder

Method:

1) First prep the swiss chard leaves. Wash the leaves thoroughly. Tear or cut the leaves and separate it from the stalks. Chop the stalks into small pieces and keep this aside. 
For easy chopping of the leaves, stack one leaf over other, do this with as many leaves as you can and then roll it and then chop it as finely as possible. No hard and fast rule on chopping it finely. Keep it as big or small as you want. Keep the chopped leaves and stalks separately. Also chop the onion and keep it aside.

2) Now in a mixer/blender bowl add the grated coconut, garlic, ginger, green chilies, cumin seeds and turmeric powder. Give it a few pulse until all the ingredients are nicely combined. You just need to give it 2 – 3 pulse else it will form a paste and we don’t want that.

3) In a wide pan or kadai heat oil. Once hot add the mustard seeds and let it splutter. Now add the curry leaves and chopped onions. Saute for few mins till the onions turn translucent.

4) Now add the stalks, saute and cook it for a min or two. The stalks should be added before adding the leaves as it takes a bit more time to cook as compared to the leaves.

5) Now add the prepared coconut masala and the cooked split bengal gram/chana dal.  Saute for a minute till the raw smell of ginger and garlic goes away.

6) Finally add the chopped leaves and salt to taste and mix everything thoroughly. Cook on a low to medium for 10- 12 mins until the leaves are nicely cooked and looks a little dry.

That’s it. Serve hot as a side dish with chapatis, rotis or with rice and any curry.

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