Spinach aka palak is super healthy. It is well known for its nutritional qualities and has always been regarded as a plant with remarkable abilities to restore energy, increase vitality and improve the quality of the blood. Not to mention it is rich in iron. The gist of the Spinach Raita dish is simple – spinach in yogurt. However, that is not all there to it. As this is related to Indian cuisine, there are also spices involved. The result is a creamy spiced spinach side dish, a perfect cooling companion for any fiery hot Indian main dish.
What is Raita?
Raita is an Indian side dish of yogurt containing chopped cucumber or other vegetables, and spices. To amp up the flavor and nutrition, we do add a plethora of fresh vegetables like tomatoes, carrots, spinach, broccoli, boiled potatoes, or even some fruits like pineapple, mangoes, pomegranate, etc.!
This cooling, no-cook yogurt dip is a great accompaniment to spicy curries, pulao, biryanis, etc.! When we have some filling paratha like aloo paratha (Indian flatbread stuffed with a spicy potato mixture), paneer paratha, or any other savory paratha, all you need is a bowl of raita to complete the meal!
What is Spinach Raita?
Spinach(Palak) raita is quick, easy, and delicious raita prepared with spinach, yogurt, and some spices. This raita is also known as palak ka raita.
I love this raita as this is a delicious accompaniment to our daily meals. It’s so soothing, gives a cooling effect to our body, and pairs so well with any kind of comfort meal. It’s a nutritious and delicious way to eat spinach with yogurt and few spices. Since spinach is super healthy, I am always looking for ways to include it in our diet. This is a perfect side dish if you are a regular rice eater.
I always suggest using chilled yogurt for making any kind of raita. But for this recipe, we are cooking spinach and adding it to the yogurt. So in this case, keep it in the refrigerator after it is ready and until ready to serve.
How to clean Palak?
Green leafy vegetables have a lot of dirt inside them and it is very important to clean them properly. I soak the palak leaves before chopping them in a big bowl of water.
After 10-15 minutes, the mud settles down. Gently remove the leaves from the water without stirring the water.
Then repeat this process until the water comes out clean.
You can also add some salt and a pinch of baking water while soaking the palak. But make sure to rinse it with clean water at the end.
Alternatively, put the spinach bowl under running water. It will clear out the dirt too!
How to make Spinach Raita
- Whisk the yogurt. Add water to get desired consistency. Add spices – sea salt, cumin powder, chili flakes, or red chili powder and sugar(optional) and mix.
2. In a small pan, heat the oil on medium heat. Now add the mustard seeds, and dried red chilies. Let the mustard seeds crackle for few seconds then add chopped ginger and saute till the raw smell disappears. Add the chopped spinach and saute. You will see that spinach has started releasing water, saute till spinach gets dry.
3. Remove the pan from heat and let the spinach cool. Add cooked mixture to the bowl, and mix well.
4. Now chill the raita in the refrigerator for a couple of hours before serving. Sprinkle some pepper powder and stir well.
Tips & Variations
Adding milk to the yogurt helps it from turning sour. If you are using fresh yogurt then skip it.
Make sure to remove the stems, saute or steam spinach, because raw spinach doesn’t taste great with this raita. You can also saute green chilies with spinach. Grated carrots can also be added to this spinach raita.
In the recipe mentioned below, I have chopped the spinach and sauteed it in oil and then added it to the yogurt. However, you can also puree the spinach after sauteeing it if you do not like it coming into your mouth.
To make it keto-friendly, use greek yogurt.
Raita almost always adorns any dinner/lunch table when we have biryani, pulao, stuffed parathas, any dry dish like aloo methi, gobhi aloo, aloo palak, pear masala, or along with a hot, spicy curry! Every spoonful of this cooling and refreshing yogurt dip is the ultimate accompaniment and a must to many meals in any Indian home! Raita tastes best when served chilled.Print
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