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Pakistani Recipes

Saag

This is a classic South Asian recipe for spinach as interpreted by Azam Khan of the Spice Shack Eatery in Duncan, BC. This recipe came from his father's village in Pakistan and is probably hundreds of years old.

Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 entire head of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 tomato, diced, or one small can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • ½ tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 1 tbsp. whole coriander seed, toasted in a dry fry pan and then crushed or ground
  • 1 potato, peeled and diced into inch cubes
  • 2-3 pounds fresh spinach, washed, stemmed and coarsely chopped*

*I cheated a bit on this. I bought two 12-ounce packages of 'microwaveable' washed and stemmed spinach. You put the whole bag in the microwave and nuke it for 2-3 minutes. That way it has already started to wilt and makes it easier to stir into the recipe.

Heat a large frypan on medium heat and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions and fry, stirring until they brown. Then add the chopped garlic and stir just until the garlic starts to release its oils. Don't let it burn!

Then add the tomatoes, salt, turmeric, cayenne and coriander. Stir to blend, and until you get the nice aromas of the spices coming through. Stir in the potatoes and toss to coat, for about 2-3 minutes. Add the spinach, (you may have to add it in batches) and maybe a quarter cup of water. Cover the pan, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the spinach has wilted and the potatoes have cooked all the way through. Excellent as a side dish, or main course vegetarian meal.




Beef Korma

This is a classic South Asian recipe as interpreted by Azam Khan of the Spice Shack Eatery in Duncan, BC. This recipe came from his father's village in Pakistan and is probably hundreds of years old.

Ingredients:

Heat a large frypan on medium heat and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions and fry, stirring until they brown. Then add the chopped garlic and ginger and stir just until the garlic and ginger start to release their oils. Don't let the mixture burn!

While the onions are browning, take a bowl and into it put the tomatoes, salt, turmeric, cayenne, cumin, black pepper, coriander, cardamom pod, cinnamon, bay leaves, nutmeg and mace.

When the onion, garlic and ginger mixture is ready, add in the bowl of tomatoes and spices, as well as the potatoes. Stir together, then add the beef and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook until the beef and potatoes are tender. Stir occasionally, and check to see if you need to add some water to keep the mixture moist. Serve over basmati rice or naan bread.




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Pacific Palate with Don Genova

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