Chard rice

chard-rice.jpg

Okay, you can really use whatever greens you like. Many similar recipes call for spinach, but how boring, so I used red chard instead. I suppose you could call this spinach rice with a major twist.

You need: 1 bunch red chard; 1 cup brown rice; 1/2 cup finely sliced onion; 1 tsp ginger paste (or finely chopped ginger); 1 tsp minced garlic; 1/8 cup slivered almonds.

For the masala: 2-3 cloves; 1 small stick cinnamon; 1 tsp coriander powder; 1 tsp cumin powder (ground cumin); 2 small bay leaves; 1/8 tsp nutmeg; 1/2 tsp turmeric; 1/2 tsp red chili powder; 1 tsp ground black pepper; 3 tbsp oil; salt to taste.

How to:

Cook the rice. Wash the chard well, drain, and finely chop it. Keep aside.

Heat the oil. Add the cloves, bay leaves, and cinnamon. Stir; give it about 2 minutes. Add the rest of the spices for the masala. Stir well, and be careful the oil doesn’t splutter all over you. Give it a couple of minutes.

Add the onions, ginger, and garlic. Add salt. Stir really well. When the onion is well-cooked, Add the chard a bit at a time. Stir well, and keep stirring occasionally. Cook for about ten minutes. The chard (or whatever greens you use) will really cook down.

In the interim, heat the oven to 300 F. Scatter the almonds in an over-proof pan and lightly coat (or spray) with vegetable oil. Toast in the oven for 10 minutes.

After cooking the chard for 10 minutes, take off heat. Add the cooked rice and mix well. Sprinkle the toasted almonds on top.

If you’re really in a hurry or just lazy: everything else stays the same, except use pre-packaged garam masala instead of this masala. Add it to the onions when they’re cooking. Skip the almonds. Use frozen chopped spinach.

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