Lexi's Achari Saag-Mattar (Achari-spiced spinach and peas)
Spinach and peas cooked with the spices that make a typical north Indian pickle, or achar
Category: Pantry-Plus On Ice
2 T oil (I recommend grapeseed)
3/4 t rai (black mustard seed)
1/2 t jeera (whole cumin seed)
2 elaichi (cardamom)
1/2 t kalonji (Nigella sativa, love-in-a-mist, "onion seeds")
1/2 t methi (fenugreek seed)
1/8 t hing (asafoetida, optional but highly recommended)
2-3 dried red chiles
2 medium onions, sliced thinly longitudinally (pole-to-pole, not along the equator)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 t minced ginger
(or 2 t ginger-garlic paste if you have it on hand (which we didn't (but I didn't realize until it was too late to be mincing things (so I left it out (so this part is obviously optional)))))
1/2 package frozen spinach
1/2 package frozen peas (in both cases, ours came from TJ's)
Heat oil over medium-high heat until it begins to shimmer. Add spices, cover with splatter shield (or lid, or something — srsly, or you will have mustard seeds all over your kitchen — but a splatter shield is preferable because it won't trap steam and allow it to fall back into the hot oil), swirl to distribute spices throughout the oil, and cook until the mustard seeds stop popping.
Add onions and cook, stirring very frequently, until they begin to turn golden brown.
Add ginger-garlic paste and cook, stirring, for another minute or two. (Or, realize that you don't actually have any on hand the way you thought you did, shrug, and move on to the next step.)
Add spinach and peas and cook, stirring regularly, until done to taste.
Variation I want to try next time: stir in drained yogurt to give it a creamy quality.
Pirate voted it quite snarfworthy.