Thandu Keerai is a delicious greens variety with tender stems suitable for cooking. Though it is delicious am still a fuss-eater when coming to recipes made with greens. Yet!! it is very essential for women as it supplements all the nutrients especially iron during periods, pregnancy and labor. So my Mom always compels me to have some. I have come to know the value of greens only after growing up.
According to a recent study, 1 out of 2 women in the world are anemic, it has been a world-wide health problem. Also 4 out of 5 babies and children suffer anemia. This should be eradicated by providing proper balanced food rich in Iron. There are many reasons that causes anemia, but the most important one is food practice. Prevention is always better than cure so eating atleast two spoons of greens once in two days, is good for women and kids. In earlier days women were able to bear and give birth to many kids only because of their habits, especially eating habit. You might have also seen old women still with long hair and sturdy physique. Their food were rich in nutrients especially Iron, there were no Pizza huts and Fast food centers and not much doctors and medicines too. Also, every mom compelled her daughter to eat greens, food rich in iron, minerals, though they were not dietitians. Now its our duty to teach our kids, and our daughters to have greens as a part of food. Eating greens is better than chemical treatments, painful shots, tonics and tablets.
So coming to the recipe, its so simple to make, thandu keerai does not take much time for cleaning and chopping because you can use its stem also apart from leaves. This is a traditional recipe still prepared in South Indian homes. Its very healthy and appropriate for women and kids. You can make variations and make it kids friendly and taste-bud friendly too!!
- Thandu Keerai (Amaranth tender/Amaranth leaves) - 2 bunches
- Grated coconut - 2 spoons
- Pearl onions/Shallots - 6 to 8
- Dry red chillies - 2
- Cumin seeds - 1/2 spoon
- Mustard seeds - 1/2 spoon
- Salt - As per taste
- Oil - 2 spoons
- Wash the greens well in running water. Greens are grown in very muddy places hence it will have lots of mud so be very cautious to wash off all the dirt away.
- Cut the roots and discard them, you can use the stems 2 inches from the root. Then chop them finely and set aside.
- In a pan add oil and after it heats up, add mustard seeds and let it splutter.
- Then add the cumin seeds and let it splutter.
- Now add chopped onions and dry red chillies and saute well until onions turns translucent.
- Then add the chopped greens and stir well.
- Keep stirring frequently.
- When the raw smell leaves and the greens seems cooked add the grated coconut, stir well and remove from flame.
TIP 1: Be very cautious to wash off all the mud and dirt from the greens or else it may cause some stomach discomfort and microbes in the mud may cause sickness. Washing twice or thrice will be better.
TIP 2: Never wash the greens after chopping the leaves. If washed so, all the water soluble vitamins and other nutrients will be lost. So wash prior to chopping.
TIP 3: Never overcook the greens, they will lose all the nutrients if overcooked.
TIP 4: You can use the stem 2 inches above the root of the greens.
TIP 5: Never have greens for dinner, it will be very hard to get digested during those dozing hours due to the loads of nutrients present in it.
TIP 6: Greens will let out water while cooking so never add water for preparing stir-fry recipes.
Healthy Thandu Keerai Poriyal / Greens Stir Fry is now ready!! Have it with Sambar rice, Dal rice etc.
The above pic is so special to me, especially my dad because he loves the cart and he got this toy after searching for years, nearly 40 years. He said that he used to play with a toy cart like the one in the pic years ago and he also exclaimed that those days were so wonderful. Am happy that I have got a chance to see my dad's toy. After long years of searching for this cart he got it in some festive celebration near his native place. Its so memorable to him and so close to his heart!! I like this hand-made cart, isn't it beautifully made...? Since this is a traditional recipe I used this toy for taking the pic. Generations have changed a lot and I really wonder whether the love, affection and culture of those days still exists!!
Linking this recipe to Anu's "South Indian Cooking" (SIC) Series Event #1