Masala Kalmi Saag (Masala Water Spinach)

Water spinach (kalmi saag in Hindi, vallal keerai in Tamil) belongs to the morning glory family. It grows abundantly in tropical and semi-tropical regions. I used to have a lot of this when I grew up in Singapore. It is called kangkong in Singapore and Malaysia. I was delighted to find this green in the market when I moved to Delhi. I was even more delighted when Hari told me that it is often consumed in his village and he knew how to prepare this. We make several different dishes with this tasty green. But, on days when Hari is feeling lazy (we all have such days), he makes this very simple North Indian version. Really simple and tasty!

1/2 kg water spinach, washed and chopped fine
1 onion, chopped fine
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder (haldi powder, manjal podi)
1 tsp cumin powder (jeera powder, jeeraga podi)
1 tsp coriander powder (dhania powder, kothamalli podi)
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (sabut jeera, jeeragam)
Salt to taste
Heat a wok and add the cumin seeds
When they begin to splutter, add onion
Saute for a couple of minutes
Add the chopped spinach
Add all the powders and salt
Sprinkle a little water
Cook on medium flame for 15 minutes
Transfer to a serving bowl
Serve hot with red/brown rice

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