Spinach with dill (dakhini saag)

Adapted from Vegetarian India by Madhur Jaffrey, who credits the Taj Falaknuma Palace hotel in Hyderabad.

I used pre-washed organic baby spinach, which made putting this together a snap.


Serves 4

1 pounds, 3 ounces spinach

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

1 medium onion, peeled and cut into fine half rings

3 good-sized cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon nice red chile powder

2 tablespoons finely sliced scallions (white part only)

4 tablespoons peeled and finely diced tomatoes

Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil and drop in all the spinach. As soon as all the leaves have wilted, drain them in a colander and run cold water over them until cool enough to handle. Squeeze out most, but not all, of the water, then chop the spinach finely and set aside.

Put the oil and butter into a medium-large sauté pan and set over medium heat. When the butter's melted and the oil is hot, add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle for 10 seconds. Add the onions and sauté for three to four minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for another two minutes. Lower the heat to medium-low, then add the chopped spinach, dill, salt, turmeric and chile powder. Mix well, raise heat back to medium and cook for two minutes. Add the scallions and diced tomatoes. Stir and cook for another two minutes.