I heard about this leafy vegetable only after I got married. Ponnaganti aaku (water amaranth) is found in Hyderabad, but not in Bangalore. So we normally end up getting our stock during this month alone (Aug-Sept).
This is surprising given that in one blog i read that the water amaranth has been labelled as a “noxious weed” by the USDA on grounds that it grows, and grows and grows!!! So how come it doesnt grow near my place? 😉
Ponnaganti aaku is very benefial to health. When cooked with toor dal (kandi pappu), it helps gain weight, but when made into a boiled vegetable, it helps lose weight. This is the only vegetable with this property.
As I only know the method using toor dal.
1 bunch of ponnaganti aaku (water amaranth)
1/2 cup toor dal (kandi pappu)
1/4 fresh coconut, dessicated
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp chilli powder
Salt to taste
- Wash the leaves, drain, chop the leaves and set aside.
- In a vessel, cook the dal with 1/2 – 3/4 cup water.
- When the dal is half-done, add the chopped leaves to the dal. Ensure that the dal does not get mashed, and retains its shpes even after the leaves are cooked.
- Add the salt, turmeric and chilli powder and mix well.
- Cook till all the water has evaporated, and the vegetable is dry.
- In a wok, heat some oil and add the tadka.
- Once the seeds start popping and the urad dal starts turning brown, add to the vegetable and mix well.
- Cook for another minute.
- Add the dessicated coconut.
- Mix well, and keep on cooking till the cocnut loses its raw colour and smell, and the vegatble is dry.
Serve hot with rice or chapatis.