In my pre-Paleo days, the Indian dish saag aloo, potato and spinach curry, was firmly located in my top 10 hit-list of go-to meals. Cheap, filling, tasty, quick, easy to cook – it ticks a lot of important boxes.
It’s also versatile – as is the case with so many Indian vegetarian dishes it works both as a side dish, or as a main course in its own right.
Saag aloo is not exactly a fine-dining dish, though, it has to be said.
It’s a workaday staple, unglamourous to be sure, homely, even, but always solid and reliable. Not the culinary equivalent of a Porsche, or a Ferrari, but a family runaround Nissan that gives many years of faithful service, and is good on gasoline.
From a Paleo perspective, the potato was obviously a problem. The equally obvious answer was to see how well sweet potato worked as a replacement.
It turns out that it works superbly!
Serves 1 – 2
- 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into cubes
- 200g fresh baby spinach
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
- 2 nice big hot green chillies, finely chopped
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp hot chilli powder
- coconut oil
- lemon juice
- garam masala
- Boil the sweet potato cubes until just tender, 8 – 10 minutes or so depending on the size of the cubes. Refresh, drain, then set aside.
- Wilt the baby spinach in batches in a microwave oven. Set aside.
- Heat 2 tbsp coconut oil over medium heat in a non-stick wok or pan.
- Add the onion. Stir fry for 3 minutes.
- Add the ginger and fresh chillies. Continue to stir fry for 2 minutes.
- Add the minced garlic, chilli powder, and turmeric. Continue to stir fry for 2 minutes, adding a splash of water if the contents of the pan start to feel as though they are sticking.
- Add just enough water to the pan to form a little sauce / gravy. Add the sweet potato cubes and wilted spinach to the pan, and heat through, a minute or so at most.
- Serve, dressed with garam masala and lemon juice to taste.