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Tamilian Spinach poriyal

Posted in : South Fields on by : Simmi Iyer

This is a really easy yet delicious recipe for a Poriyal that hails from Tamil Nadu. You can use any vegetable although I love cooking this with spinach. Not only is it quick but works well with the spices. The key to cooking spinach poriyal is to let the greens cook without any water. As they wilt and release their moisture they begin to take on the flavor of the spices. I have used fresh grated coconut although you can swap it for desiccated coconut if you prefer. Also I love using coconut oil while cooking poriyal giving this South Indian recipe a real depth in the dish again vegetable oil would work too.


360gms Spinach leaves washed and chopped

3 tbsp vegetable oil

1 mild dried red chilli

1 heaped tsp black mustard seeds

1 tsp urad dal (skinned and split variety)

10-12 curry leaves

110gms red onion finely chopped

½ tsp mild chilli powder/ kashmiri chilli powder

70gms fresh grated coconut

Salt to taste

Handful coriander to garnish


  1. Heat the oil in a wok or kadai over a medium flame. Add the red chilli and fry for a few seconds followed by the mustard seeds. As they begin to splutter add the urad dal and half the curry leaves followed by the chopped onion. Fry the onions for 7-8 minutes. You want them to soften rather than get too much of a color.
  2. Add the chilli powder and stir well. Now add the spinach a little at a time making sure to stir and mix all the spices with the spinach leaves. Fry the spinach for 6 minutes. Season well. Turn the heat to low and add the coconut, remaining curry leaves and fresh coriander. Stir well and serve warm with some rice or paratha.
Agathi Keerai Poriyal with Coconut Recipe, Agathi Keerai Poriyal

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