Keerai (Spinach) Thandu (Stem) Mor Kuzhambu

Kuzhambu may be tamarind or yoghurt based – this dish is prepared with yoghurt or buttermilk as the main ingredient and the vegetable used is the stem of the spinach.
Therefore ensure that you put away the stem when you are cooking spinach dishes, especially if it is a thick stem as the stem can be cooked in various dishes!!
One such exotic dish is this, which is a gravy with butter milk!!

Spinach is best consumed fresh although frozen spinach is also available in the local super markets.  The nutrients of the fresh spinach can be best preserved if the spinach is cooked as soon as it is purchased or picked fresh.   It should not be tucked away in the fridge for a few days as most of the nutritional value will be lost.
Spinach with some water added to it in a pan, cooks in minutes directly on a stove.  It is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin B2, B6, vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium, potassium, and is  a very good source of protein

Ingredients to make 6 serves

2 Tbs Coriander Seeds
1 Tsp. Cumin Seeds
1 Tsp  Black Peppercorn
1-2 Green Chilli
½ inch piece Ginger
¼ Tsp Mustard Seeds
1 Tbs  Channa Dal
1Tbs. Rice
¼ Cup Water
A cup of the chopped stem of the spinach
1½ Cup Buttermilk or Yoghurt
2 Tbs Sour Cream (optional)
½ Cup Water
6-8 Tbs Freshly Grated Coconut
1-2 Tsp. Salt

For Seasoning

1 Tbs Oil
1 Tsp. Mustard Seeds
Few Curry Leaves
½ Tsp Ajwain (Omam – optional)

Stem of the Spinach Buttermilk Gravy

Keerai (Spinach) Thandu (Stem) Mor (Buttermilk) Kuzhambu (Gravy)


Soak the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black peppercorn, chillies, ginger, mustard seeds, channa dal and rice in quarter cup of water for about an hour.
Grind the above to a soft semi solid mixture with the freshly grated coconut.
Whip the buttermilk or yoghurt, salt and sour cream with half cup of water in the grinder and add it to the ground mixture

In the meantime, cook the chopped stem of the spinach in a cup of water in a medium sized cooking pot
Cover it with a lid and let it boil for  5-6  minutes until it is tender and cooked.
Add the above ground buttermilk mixture into the cooked vegetable
Bring the Kozhambu to the boil on a low flame and turn the heat off immediately

Heat the tablespoon of oil in a flat pan and add the mustard seeds
When the seeds crackle, add the Ajwain and pour in into the Kozhambu

Note: My preference is to use only one green chilli  – Using Ajwain in the seasoning enhances the flavour of the dish – A pinch of turmeric powder may also be used when the kozhambu is being cooked.
Garnish it with curry leaves and it is ready to be served.
Tastes great with Cabbage, Choko, BeansCapsicum Parupusili