Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Malabar Spinach Side Dish - Konkani style (Vaali Upkari)

Currently, the month of Shravan is going on. It also means lot of fresh vegetables and greens available in the market. 

For vegetarians it does not make a difference but strict non-vegetarians pine for the month to end to begin meat eating once again. I recently made Malabar Spinach side dish which is very tasty and simple to make. I make use of both leaves (Paan) and tender stem (Tarne Dentu) for this dish. This vegetable side dish is commonly made in many Konkani homes and finally garnished with grated coconut. A dash of red chilli powder is added to camouflage the bland taste of vegetable. The taste of this vegetable dish is an acquired one and it takes time to get acquainted to like it or for that matter hate it. I also enjoy Malabar Spinach Ambat with Papaya (Vaali Papayi Ambat).

~ Vaali Upkari ~
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes

Malabar Spinach | Vaali - 4-5 cups
Red Chilli powder - 1/3 tsp
For Seasoning -
Garlic pods (crushed) - 2 
Red Chillies (split into two) - 2 
Coconut oil 

For Garnish -
Grated Coconut (fresh or frozen) - 1/4 tbsp

Wash and rinse the spinach leaves and separate the tender stem from non-tender ones. Use the tender ones for this side dish. In a deep bottomed vessel, heat few spoons of coconut oil, once the oil is hot enough, season with crushed garlic and red chillies. Add the spinach leaves and tender stem now and adjust salt and add a dash of red chilli powder. Sprinkle a little water and bring to boil. The leaves wilt to 1/4 of the size once they cook. Simmer with lid on low flame till completely cooked. Garnish with grated coconut just before serving and serve warm as a side dish.


  1. My mom always speaks about vaali upkari but I have never made it. Usually its ambat or bendi at my place. This looks health and must taste great with dalithoy

    1. @ Uj -

      Thank you. This recipe was on my to-do list for a long time, finally found Vaali and made Upkari. It tastes great (if you like cooked greens :-)) just like cooked spinach.


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