I'M SO BLOOOOOMIN EXCITED. I'm not sure how many of you are going to understand (until you eat it). My Arab friends will understand though because this is a vegan Molokhia, a very very loved dish in the Middle East.
It's super flippin nutritious but it's often cooked with chicken AND it often has a thick slippery texture that I'm not quite sold on. It wasn't until last summer that our friend served me their family's vegetarian version, which I politely started eating intending to convince them and myself that I loved it. No acting was needed (Julia Roberts can relax as my talents aren't going to be showcased just yet). It was light, jam packed with flavour and just divine. I had three helpings and promised I would recreate it at home
This is a slightly thinner, looser version to lessen the slippery texture a bit (that texture okra can have and you either love it or hate it) because us western folk haven't had magnificent mums serving this dish up to us since we were tiny little annoying whipper snappers and a lot of us just aren't quite used to that texture. I've just added one extra step in that a lot of people do anyway, which is to defrost the Molokhia leaves in a bowl of hot water and lemon juice.
Serve with rice or Arabic bread and a sprinkle of onions soaked in vinegar.
Molokhia originated in Egypt and is packed with nutrients, rich in antioxidants and is a good source of fibre. Winner.
you've got potassium, vitamin A, K, E, C, calcium, magnesium.... the list goes on.
Defrosting the molokhia in the lemon water first will help separate the leaves from the thick, slippery coating. You simply wait for it to be defrosted (about 20 mins) then drain it through a sieve.
Frying up garlic with fresh coriander to stir in to the dish right at the end.
PREP TIME 25 MINS | COOK TIME 10 MINS | TOTAL 35 MINS
2 x 400g frozen Molokhia leaves
1 + 1/2 onion (finely chopped)
1 bulbs garlic (crushed)
2 lemons (juice)
3 tbsp white/red vinegar
500 ml veggie stock
bunch fresh coriander
3 tsp coriander
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp paprika
Put the frozen block of Molokhia leaves into a bowl and cover with boiling water and the juice and rinds of one lemon. Let it defrost (roughly 20 mins) and then sieve to separate leaves from liquid. You may have to move the leaves around to get most of the liquid out. Discard liquid and keep leaves for later.
While waiting finely chop 1/2 onion and put in a small bowl with the vinegar. Set aside until the end.
Fry the rest of the onion in 2 tbsp oil until just starting to brown.
Add the spices and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring continuously.
Add Molokhia leaves and stir then add the stock and stir. Cook for 5 mins.
Meanwhile heat 2 tbsp oil in a new frying pan, add the garlic and fresh coriander leaves. Fry for 5 mins or until garlic is starting to brown then add to the Molokhia.
Finally, add 2 tbsp of lemon juice.
Taste and season with salt and/or more lemon juice.
Serve with rice or Freshly toasted Arabic and top with the onion & vinegar.