I found just a few stems of Pui or Malabar Spinach in the Indian store. Its rather difficult to get it here in Sydney. Any Sydneysiders reading this, who know where I can get Pui in abundance, please do let me know! :-)
So Pui as its referred to in Bengali and Poi in Oriya, is a family favourite. Sharmila’s recipes on Pui are awesome, if you haven’t already read them. Pui at home is made with lots of veggies in ‘chorchori’ (mix vegetable) style. I think chorchori, especially with Pui must be had on Sunday afternoon for lunch with lots of hot steamed rice accompanied by a chicken, mutton or fish curry, followed by an afternoon siesta! No Sunday lunch is complete with out the quintessential siesta :)
- 11/2 tablespoons mustard oil
- 1/2 tsp of Paanch Phoron ( a pinch of each- Nigella, fenugreek, cumin, fennel, radhuni/celery seeds)
- 3 slit green Chillies
- 1 inch fresh Ginger- grated
- 3-4 stems of Malabar spinach/ Pui – roughly chopped with the stem
- 1/4 diced pumpkin
- 6-7 cauliflower florets (you can also add french beans and other vegetables of your choice. Just don’t miss out on pumpkin)
- 1/2 cup Peas
- 1 diced Potato
- 1-2 Carrots – chopped length wise
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- salt to taste
- 1/2 tsp sugar (optional)
- Paste of 2 tablespoons of Poppy (poppy) and 1 tsp mustard seeds (soak for 2 hours and grind to a thick paste)
Heat oil in a wok/kadhai. Add panchphoron and let it splutter for a few seconds. Add slit green chillies and grated ginger and sauté for 4-5 seconds. Add the diced pumpkin first of all the vegetables and sauté it for 2 minutes. Add cauliflower and let it soften a little. Add the rest of the vegetables and mix well. Cover the wok and on medium flame let it cook for 3-4 minutes. Uncover and add the dry masalas- chilli powder, turmeric, salt, sugar). Mix well and its now it’s time to add the Malabar spinach/Pui. Mix well and leave it covered for a few more minutes. Don’t over cook it. Remember Pui is made best on low to medium flame. That’s what ma says!
Once the Pui softens, and all the other veggies are cooked, add the poppy-mustard seed paste to it and mix well. Cook for a further 2 minutes. Turn off heat and let it stand covered for sometime. Transfer to bowl. Serve hot with rice and ghee.
Until next time!