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Leafy greens are an important part of any diet. They provide fiber, essential vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium and magnesium and add to any meal. They provide protection against diseases like high cholesterol, heart disease, and diabetes etc. Indian cuisine is noted for its use of leafy greens that are commonly called as "Saag". Saag is a generic term used for a variety of greens like spinach, mustard leaves, amaranth etc. Here is a list of some common saags that are available in the Phoenix area. There are pictures with each saag, so readers can recognize the greens when they shop for groceries. The next article in this series would contain simple recipes to cook each type of saag.
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Spinach: Commonly called "Palak" or "Palang saag" in most Indian languages, this is the most commonly available green. It is very easy to cook and cooked spinach is actually more nutritious than raw since it frees up the minerals for better absorption. Easily available in all Phoenix groceries like Fry's, Basha's, Albertson's, Lee Lee Oriental supermart and Costco.
Malabar Spinach: Commonly called as "Poi sag" in northern India, Dt5FW6a9x this green is actually not related to spinach at all. The English name is Basella alba. Cooks well as a stir fry with egg plants and pumpkin. It is available in Asian groceries like Lee Lee Oriental Supermart in Chandler, Mekong Market in Mesa, Ranch Market in Phoenix and Asiana in Glendale. It is generally available under its Chinese name (Shan choy) or listed as a miscellaneous item. Both the leaves and the spice have a slight sweet and bitter taste. It is commonly cooked as a cheap nfl jerseys authentic stir fry with potatoes. Methi saag is available in Lee Lee Oriental Supermart and Ashoka Indian groceries in Chandler.
Water spinach: Commonly called as "Kalmi saag" in eastern Indian, this plant has small pointy leaves attached to the main stem. It is generally available in Asian groceries under the Chinese name (Yeung choy). It can be found in Phoenix in Lee Lee Oriental supermart in Chandler under miscellaneous greens (same aisle as poi saag and spinach).
Amaranth: Called "Note saag" in Bengal this plant has small leaves and green berries and grows wild as a weed. It is also used as fodder for cattle apart from a food source. The leaves are rich in Vitamins A, C, folate and iron. It is not available in any grocery store in Phoenix but some households grow it here and the seeds are available in a nursery in South Phoenix.
Pea leaves: Called "Matar saag" this is the pea plant from which we get the pea pods. Very good for fiber and vitamin C. Commonly available in Lee Lee Oriental supermart in Chandler as pea leaves in the leafy green aisle. It can be cooked as a stir fry along with whole pea pods or peas.
Mustard greens: Called "Sarsoon ka saag" in Northern India these are the leaves of the mustard seeds. It is slightly tangy in taste and is cooked as a pureed vegetable and eaten with corn bread (Makki ki Roti). Mustard greens are available in American specialty groceries like Whole foods or in the frozen aisles of Indian groceries like Ashoka and Lee Lee in Chandler.
Sorel leaves: Called "Gongura saag" in Telegu and "Khatta saag" in Hindi, it is mostly eaten in the south Indian states India. Gongura can be cooked as a stir fry or made into a chutney. It is available in Ashoka Indian Grocery in Chandler.
Colocacia or taro leaves: Called "Kachu r pata or Kachu r Lati" in Bengal, these are the leaves and stem of the colocacia or taro plant. Cheap NFL College Football Jerseys Taro, a slippery, starchy, root vegetable, grows in many parts of Asia. The roots are cooked boiled but the leaves are eaten cheap jerseys from China with fish or shrimp. Fresh taro leaves are available in Lee Lee Oriental supermart in Chandler. Frozen colocacia stem (Kachu r lati) is available in I Mart Bangladeshi grocery in Chandler and Desi pla.

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