Finally winter break is over! Though it was a fun time but and I’m actually relieved for two reasons – firstly, life is back to routine (waking up early, morning aerobics, evening walk) and , secondly, food is back to normal. All the picnics, get togethers, board games and movie nights meant lots of food. Despite my best efforts to keep things simple and healthyish, we ended up indulging frequently in comfort food – rich stews, scrumptious desserts and all sorts of snacks.
This entire month I’m dedicating to delicious and nutritious recipes. I don’t believe in counting calories because that takes all the joy out of food. Refrain from overtly fatty and sugary food, processed ingredients and fizzy drinks with control on quantity always does the trick for me. When we eat nutritious foods, we don’t need to count calories. As long as you feed the body nutrient rich protein, whole-food fats and fibre from fruits and vegetables, it takes care of the rest on its own.
Among the green leafy vegetables, spinach is my most favourite and making a warm salad with it is the easiest and quickest way to include it in my daily diet more frequently. Garlic sautéed spinach is a classic combination. I added a little spicy twist to it to suit my South Asian palate. Cumin and chilli flakes pick up the flavours instantly and bind all the ingredients together.
The salad actually gets ready in minutes but there is a lot going on for it in terms of flavour and texture. The warm spinach leaves provide a delicious comforting base, while juicy orange, creamy salty feta and crunchy almonds do their magic to make the plate more whole, more interesting and definitely more delicious.
1 kg baby spinach leaves
3 cloves garlic, crushed and finely chopped
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
1/2 cup almonds
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt to taste
black pepper to taste
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup feta or paneer cheese
This Is What You Do:
Wash and pat dry the spinach leaves.
Heat oil in a frying pan. Add garlic, red chilli flakes, cumin seeds and almonds.
Stir fry for a minute on medium heat till everything is lightly toasted and aromatic.
Add spinach leaves and sauté for another couple of minutes.
Place sautéed spinach and all contents of the pan in a serving plate. Season with salt and black pepper.
Top with orange slices, sliced onion and feta, cottage or paneer cheese.
Squeeze a lemon on top.