Sai bhaji is a traditional Sindhi dish made with greens, veggies and lentils. It is packed with proteins and iron and makes for a healthy and delicious meal when served with steamed rice.
I was first introduced to Sai bhaji through sharing my friend Pinky’s lunchbox at school. Her mum indulged us by sending us a bowl of it each time she made some for the family. To this day it brings back memories of a very happy and foodie childhood.
Pinky and I traded recipes of our favourite foods (she loved my mum’s crispy okra) a few years ago and this post is dedicated to her and our friendship.
I might have tweaked the recipe over the years to suit our little man’s palate.
250 grams spinach, washed and chopped
2-3 tablespoon of fresh fenugreek leaves
1/4 cup fresh dill
2-3 fistfuls, chana dal, soaked for a few hours
1 large onion, rough chopped
1 tablespoon of ginger-garlic
1 small potato, peeled and roughly chopped
2 tomatoes, roughly chopped
1-2 baby aubergines, chopped
1/2 a cup of red pumpkin, chopped
1/3 teaspoon turmeric
1/3 teaspoon chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin-coriander powder (optional)
salt to taste
1-2 tablespoons, ghee
2 tablespoons, lemon juice
- Heat the ghee in a pressure cooker. Add the onions and saute till pink. Add the ginger-garlic and saute on high for a couple of minutes.
- Add the potatoes, pumpkin, aubergines and tomatoes.
- Now add the turmeric and chilli powder and mix well.
- Cook for a few minutes and add the chana dal.
- Now add the greens – spinach, fenugreek leaves and dill.
- Mix and add just enough water to cover the veggies.
- Pressure cook for 3 whistles. Turn down the heat and simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and let the cooker cool down.
- When you are able to open the lid of the cooker, add salt, cumin-coriander powder (if using).
- Mash the mixture roughly or blend with a hand blender, as I do.
- Adjust seasoning. Add the lemon juice.
- Serve with hot steamed rice.
I blend the sai bhaji since the little man likes a soupy version of the sai bhaji to cover his rice. You can leave it roughly mashed.
My friend’s mum used to serve this with ghee rice which makes for a deliciously indulgent meal. Any which way, it’s finger licking good!