Rasika’s Palak Chaat is quite simply amazing. Palak, meaning Spinach, and Chaat, roughly translated to a savory snack, is an easy to make fried spinach dish that’s garnished with a sweet yogurt sauce. The crispness of the spinach coupled with the sweetness of the sauce really makes for an interesting dish.
Sautéed spinach used to be my go-to side dish for most of my meals but after discovering how easy this recipe is to make at home I now do this more regularly. After first trying this at Rasika I googled around trying to figure out exactly what Palak Chaat was and why it was so delicious! The recipe by Vivi on PoPville seemed to have nailed it as close as possible. I’ve modified the original recipe slightly to fit my own taste (mainly using honey flavored yogurt and using Trader Joe’s amazing curry powder).
Palak Chaat is not a complex dish to make given how wonderful it is. Just fry spinach leaves, chop some tomato, dates, onion and combine with a yogurt sauce. I can typically have this dish put together in less then 15 minutes. So it’s a quick, tasty side dish that can be added to any meal. I guarantee anyone skeptical of Indian food will become a raving fan after serving them this dish!
- Frying oil (see notes below on amount needed, I typically use sunflower seed oil)
- ½ bag of baby spinach (about 4 oz, completely dry)
- ¼ cup Greek yogurt (I use Honey flavored)
- 2 dates, pitted and chopped
- Juice from ½ lemon
- ⅛ tsp coriander
- ⅛ tsp cumin
- ⅛ tsp curry powder (I use Trader Joes brand)
- 1 tbsp tomato, chopped
- 1 tbsp red onion, chopped (you can substitute shallots)
- Kosher salt, to taste
- In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, chopped dates, coriander, cumin, curry powder, lemon juice, water, and a pinch of salt.
- Dry the spinach leaves on a paper towel
- Either fill a heavy bottom pot with enough oil to roughly ½ inch depth and turn on medium high heat or fill and heat your deep frier as per instructions provided with the fryer
- Gently place a few leaves into the hot oil taking care to stand adequate distance from the pan or fryer to avoid splash back. Spinach leaves contain a lot of water so this WILL happen. Fry for roughly 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Place fried leaves on a paper towel to drain and cool. Continue frying the remainder of leaves in small batches
- Finally plate the leaves and drizzle some sauce. Add the chopped tomatoes and onion on top and enjoy!
Yes! I get this as an app at my favorite Indian restaurant all the time!
“Bollywood Bistro” in Fairfax, VA
Bollywood is good. I think they add cilantro to their version. This is a “Kori Approved” cilantro free recipe 🙂
You make me hungry, even when I am not! Thanks!!
Haha thanks! It’s really good!
I enjoyed this at Rasika and went looking for a recipe. This is one of the better versions on the Internet but another adds a step and dips the spinach in a modest “batter” (it is not a full coat, like usual batters– more of a simple wetting. Helps it fry crisper.)
You can watch this video at Rasika to see it being done. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRbBcfsE2Qs
Before he fries it, the spinach is dipped into a 1:2 mixture of chick pea flour and water
Neat! Thanks for the comment and the tip!