Rice thali with Helochi xaak or Marsh Herb as an important side dish

Before I proceed with details about this thali, I would once again reiterate the fact that presentation of dishes is crucial to enticing your family members with their diverse food preferences, to savour your cooking. Even simple food will look magnificent and alluring if served in an attractive manner. This thali that I serve to my family now and then is enhanced with the health benefits accrued from Helochi xaak or Marsh Herb. There was a time when it was very difficult for me to coax my kids into eating this wild leafy green that is so beneficial for health. So, I came up with this thali that is further embellished with a lot of other side dishes, each again having their own health benefits and easily available as well.

The thali is complete with the following items:

a)Helochi and jack fruit seeds dry fry

b)Sprouted moong and apple salad

c)Cucumber salad

d)Lobia(black-eyed peas) and rajma (red kidney beans) curry

e)Mixed moong and masoor dal seasoned with lemon juice and long coriander

f)Indian jujube sweet pickle

g)Jack fruit seeds mashed and seasoned with elephant apple powder

h)Mango pickle

i)Mixed vegetables stir fry

j)Chapati

k)A small bowl of rice

l)Roasted papad

m)Lemon, onion

n)Cow ghee one tea spoon

Consumption of Helochi on a regular basis will provide a lot of benefits to the body. This leafy green helps to deal with pain, skin problems, digestion issues, nerve issues etc.

Method of cooking:

There are many ways of consuming this leafy green. We can finely chop and add to dal, make a stir fry or a khar (alkaline dish).

Here is the recipe for cooking this leafy dish that I have included in this thali

Helochi xaak—2 bundle

Onion –1 chopped

ginger, garlic paste— as required

Jack fruit seeds—a handful

Oil—one tablespoon

Turmeric—as required

Salt—as required

Chilli—as required

Clean and wash the leafy greens and chop.

Clean, wash jack fruit seeds and cut into halves

Place the kadhai on the stove. Pour one table spoon oil and heat. Add the onion, ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell goes away. Add turmeric as required and the jack fruit seeds, stir for a while. Add salt and cover the kadhai. Keep flame low as the jack fruit seeds need to cook. Check now and then and stir. Once the jack fruit seeds get cooked, add the leafy greens and one chilli. You can slit the chilli into half. Keep frying the content in the kadhai on low flame and once you notice that the leafy greens have cooked, turn off the stove. Serve this dish hot with rice and roti.

I used jack fruit seeds because it was the season. If jack fruit seeds are not available, you can use potato as well.

P.S:- cooking is always an experiment to cherish and you need not be fastidious about the rules of cooking. If you add more or less of any ingredient, or even if you miss a particular ingredient, you will definitely create a new taste– a taste that is uniquely curated by your heart, and with each attempt at cooking a new dish, you will only script your own journey of self-improvement and self-satisfaction.   The quantity of the ingredients in any recipe including this Helochi recipe will vary depending on the number of people we cook for. Just listen to your heart.

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