A recipe for fresh, green Saag Chana or Saag Chole, a blend of leafy greens mixed in with creamy garbanzo beans or chickpeas, and garnished with roasted potatoes.
This is a healthy recipe and a popular Indian restaurant dish made with leafy greens and chickpeas. There are many, many versions of Saag Chana out there, and many do not blend the greens, but I rather like giving them a chance to get all smooth and silky in the blender before mixing them up with the chickpeas. But there is texture too in this recipe, from onions and tomatoes, and, of course, the chickpeas.
Saag Chana is traditionally made with spinach, but I used some Swiss chard instead because I had some on hand, and it is quite possibly my favorite green to cook. Along with the leafy chard there's some mint and some coriander and a few spices to add incredible flavor. All of this goodness is topped off by crunchy roasted potatoes, an optional garnish.
As with most recipes here, this is an easy-to-make dish. And it doesn't take long to come together. Try it. You'll be glad you did.
More tasty chickpea recipes
- Chana Bhatura or Chole Bhatura
- Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpeas
- Thai Curried Chickpeas with Thai Red Curry Paste
- Lebanese Chickpea Stew
- 1 bunch spinach (chopped. Or use baby spinach or swiss chard or another quick-cooking green)
- 14 oz chickpeas (canned or cooked)
- 2 teaspoon coconut oil
- 2 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 large onion (diced)
- 4 cloves garlic (minced)
- ½- inch knob ginger (grated)
- 1-2 green chili peppers (chopped. Two chilies make this fairly spicy, so use one if you'd like less heat)
- 2 tablespoon mint (chopped)
- 2 tablespoon cilantro (chopped)
- 1 medium tomato (finely diced)
- 1 tablespoon tomato ketchup (or tomato paste)
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 2 tablespoon cashews (soaked in ¼ cup water)
- Salt to taste
For roasted potato garnish:
- 2 medium potatoes (chopped in a small dice)
- A pinch cayenne
- Oil spray
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Blend the cashews with water until you have a very smooth paste.
- Place the potatoes on a baking sheet sprayed with oil, toss them with the salt and cayenne, then spread in an even layer. Spray the tops once more with oil. Roast in a 350 degree oven for 20-30 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked and golden. Set aside.
- Heat 1 teaspoon of oil in a saucepan. Add the cumin and coriander seeds and stir-fry until the coriander seeds darken a couple of shades.
- Add half the onions, green chilies, ginger, and garlic. Season with some salt.
- Saute the onions, stirring frequently, over medium-low heat, until they are softened and translucent.
- Add the mint, coriander, and spinach or chard. Cook, stirring frequently, until the chard has wilted, about five minutes.
- Place the spinach-coriander-cumin-onion mixture in the blender, add enough water to make a thick paste, and blend until very smooth.
- In the same saucepan, heat the remaining oil.
- Add the mustard seeds. When they sputter, add the remaining onions.
- Season with salt and saute until the onions become soft and translucent.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and tomato paste or ketchup.
- Cook, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes are reduced almost to a pulp.
- Add the blended greens, garam masala, and the chickpeas. Stir well and let the mixture come to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for a couple of minutes.
- Add the cashewnut paste and let the sauce heat through. Turn off the heat.
- Add the lemon juice and salt if needed. Garnish with the roasted potatoes.
- Serve hot with rice or rotis or naan.