1 or 2 hot green peppers (jalapeno, serrano), slivered
3 cloves garlic
1-½ inch piece of fresh ginger
3 tablespoons shredded coconut (unsweetened)
3 bunches greens, choose from kale, mustard, turnip, spinach
2 to 4 tablespoons ghee and/or vegetable oil
2 tablespoons tamarind paste (or more to taste)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar
Place the peppers, garlic, ginger and coconut in a small spice grinder. Pulse until a rough paste forms. Wash and chop greens. You should have about 12 cups. Don't sweat it, proportions do not need to be exact.
Heat ghee in wide deep frying pan. Add the seasoning paste and saute for a few minutes. Add the greens and stir to coat with paste as much as possible The greens will shrink significantly, so just stuff ?em in and put a lid on the pan until they wilt to a manageable size. This is a matter of a few minutes. Stir again and redistribute the paste. Add tamarind, cumin, garam masala, salt and sugar. Cook, stirring, until greens are done to your liking (roughly 15 minutes). Add a tablespoon or two of water if things get too dry, or additional ghee if something starts to stick or burn. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
Reprinted from A Cook's Guide to Chicago, Second Edition, by Marilyn Pocius
A Cook's Guide to Chicago, Lake Claremont Press, ©2006