Indian Greens with Ginger, Fennel and Cumin

This dish was adapted from a Madhur Jaffrey recipe for spinach that I found here. I tend to use what is readily available at my house, rather than going to the store to purchase missing ingredients. Fortunately, I have most Indian spices on hand, having gone through many Indian cuisine phases (obsessions) in the past.



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (I just used more oil, since local butter isn't available at the moment)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon black cumin seeds (I used plain cumin seeds)
  • 1-1/2 medium onions, peeled, cut in half lengthwise, and cut crosswise into thin half-rings
  • 1 piece fresh ginger (3/4 inch), peeled and cut into thin strips (I store fresh ginger in the freezer in a zip plastic bag)
  • 2 pounds fresh spinach, washed and trimmed (I used kale and bok choy)
  • 1 fresh, hot, green chile or 1/3 jalapeno, cut into thin rings
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional, I used enough chili that this wasn't necessary)


  1. Heat oil and butter in a large saute pan set over medium-high heat. When hot, add fennel and cumin seeds. Stir, and add onions and ginger. Stir-fry until onions turn a rich brown color, 5 to 7 minutes.
  2. Add spinach. Cover pan, and cook until spinach has wilted completely, stirring occasionally, about 7 minutes. When spinach has wilted, reduce the heat to medium. Add chile, salt, and cayenne pepper, and stir. Cover pan, and cook a few minutes more.
  3. Uncover skillet, and stir. Cook until there is hardly any liquid left in the bottom of the pan, about 5 minutes more.
  4. Serve with other yummy Indian dishes, such as Indian-spiced salmon, Fresh Green Chutney and Indian Rice.


Tip: How to Prep Cooking Greens

Prepping your greens can seem like a chore if you don't have a good system. Try this method for kale, collards, Swiss chard, spinach (if you're afraid of the stems), etc. and you'll find that it's easy eating greens! We even have a great little video demonstration.Read more


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- Josh Allen

Josh Allen, Companion Bread, St. Louis MO
Companion Bakery