Greens with Beans (Mustard greens with Black eyed peas and Kale with chickpeas)

I had bought some mustard greens and was thinking of ways to cook them. The obvious one was sarson ka saag. I wanted to go a little simpler. I thought of pairing them with one of our favorite dried bean - black-eyed peas. I based this recipe on the famous palak paneer and followed a similar method. This has become our new favorite way to eat greens. I recently made kale this way too. I am so glad to have found another way to eat greens in a totally yummy way while still being so healthy. It never fails to impress the husband (and of course, me too) with its taste.

Think of this recipe as a technique and use it on any of the greens, pairing them with different dried beans.

Mustard greens with black-eyed peas

1 bunch (4-5 cups) mustard greens
1 cup black-eyed peas
1/2 cup spinach leaves (frozen) *
3 green chilies
2 inch ginger
1 small onion
4 large garlic cloves
1 tomato
1/2 tsp garam masala
2 tsp milk powder *
  • Soak dried black-eyed peas for 4 hours. Pressure cook for about 20 minutes with just enough water to cover the beans along with a teaspoon of salt and a pinch of asafoetida.
  • Wash the mustard greens very well. They tend to have dirt on the curly leaves. Roughly cut the leaves with a scissor and microwave for 4 minutes with a couple of sprinkles of water. Add the spinach leaves and microwave another 4 minutes. I prefer microwaving rather than blanching because I think a lot of nutrients are lost in the water used for blanching. Microwaving still retains that bright green color while preserving nutrients.
  • Puree the greens with the green chilies and chopped ginger.
  • Heat 1 tsp oil and 1 tsp butter. Add chopped onion and garlic. Saute till translucent.
  • Add chopped tomato and a pinch of turmeric.
  • When the tomato is soft, add the green puree. Cook for a couple of minutes.
  • Add the cooked black eyed peas along with the cooking water. There shouldn't be much water left with the beans in the pressure cooker.
  • Add a teaspoon or so (depending on your taste) of salt and cook for about 10 minutes.
  • Add garam masala and milk powder. The milk powder works as a thickner and adds some creaminess.
  • Serve with rotis and some sliced onions.

  • I used frozen spinach leaves. If using fresh, add 1 cup of spinach leaves.
  • Heavy cream or even evaporated milk can be used in place of milk powder. I picked up the milk powder substitute idea from my mom. We do not usually have cream lying around so this substitute is quite handy (and healthy).
  • I add asafoetida when cooking dried beans to help digest them better. It is totally optional.
  • If the cooked beans have more water left over, add the drained beans first and then add the leftover water as needed.
  • Garam masala is not used in palak paneer but I use it here because it works better with the beans and the heartier greens.
I tried this same method with kale to which I added some cooked chickpeas and tofu. Works beautifully every time. I did not have a tomato this time so I used tomato paste which worked great too.


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