26/06/2015 by Aruna Kamath
When my daughters come back from school they are so ravenous that they could eat a tiger! Left with little energy to complain, the food that is served on the table is gobbled up in minutes. However, there are days when they get bored and tired of the same kind of food and ask for a change.
Being a working mother, I often feel guilty that I am unable to serve them food that excites them. With a severe time crunch, there’s also little I can to do to whip up or experiment with a new dish before they get back home. Which is why, there’s a set food timetable during the week days. It’s either a dosa, idly or bread in various avatars. If its idli, its shallow fried crisp, the drab dosa gets a makeover with a generous garnishing of cheese shavings over it and bread gets upgraded into sandwiches – grilled or plain – with varied fillings such as mayonnaise and veggies or mashed potatoes spiced with pepper.
So it was one of those days where I was high on energy, with a strong urge to try out something special for the kids. I rummaged into the fridge and found some spinach, some boiled and mashed potatoes (which is always kept in reserve), then, there were also some bread-end pieces and an opened cheese cube packet which needed to be used up. I mixed them all together and added a bit of spice and fried them into balls. So that’s how this spinach ball came about. I was glad it turned out delicious and was thoroughly enjoyed by the kids. Even better, I was thrilled that I got them to eat healthy spinach without frowning or grumbling.
There may be one hitch though. If you don’t get the right consistency there’s a danger of the balls crumbling and disintegrating while frying. So make sure you make firm balls. And do remember to get all the water out in the spinach before mixing it .
The balls can be prepared in advance and frozen.
What you need:
- Potatoes – 4 large, boiled, peeled and mashed
- Spinach – 1 cup firmly packed; chopped, thoroughly rinsed and drained to remove water
- Green chillies – 4, pureed or mashed
- Cheese – grated; about 3-4 tbsps
- Bread – crumbled, one cup
- Garlic – 3-4 flakes – crushed (optional)
- Salt and Pepper – to taste
How to proceed
- Mix all the above ingredients (except bread crumbs) in a big bowl. While doing so it is important to squeeze out the excess water from the spinach. Else the dough will be watery
- Pinch out small portions of the dough and roll them into equal sized balls. Do re-check for hardness here
- Coat the balls with an even layer of bread crumbs
- Fry on medium flame, until golden brown.
- Serve with mint chutney or ketchup