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Purslane Leaves Flatbread | Kulfa Paratha

I realized only in the later years of my life in Yanbu that the leaves I believed were methi was actually purslane. I have been using purslane in all my methi recipes without knowing until I got my hands on actual methi leaves from Jeddah! Around the same time, I came across a blogger who shared purslane pics and I laughed so much at my ignorance! But this can happen to anyone, right?
Updated the title and the link to reflect Purslane or Kulfa as we call in India and Pakistan.

Content updated on 6th December 2019

Fenugreek Leaves Flat Bread | Methi Paratha

What is Purslane or Kulfa?

Purslane is a green, leafy succulent that can be eaten raw or cooked. Yes, purslane is safe to eat. It is grown easily and so not all supermarkets sell because you can easily forage. The leaves and stems are edible and are known to have high vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium, magnesium, potassium and iron content. A low calorie but rich in nutrients make it a nutrient-dense cheap food but not marketed well enough to call it a superfood! By all accounts, purslane is a nutritional powerhouse. 

How does Purslane taste?

The leaves are moisture-rich and have a tart, almost lemony tang with a peppery taste like arugula. 

What do you do with Purslane?

You can do pretty much everything that you do with any other leafy vegetables, stir fry, raw salads, pestos, curries, etc. There are plenty of Indian and Pakistani recipes on the internet, just google Kulfa recipes and you will be amazed at the delicious pairings! Once I learnt that these are not methi leaves, I checked with other ladies in the town who are mostly Pakistanis and learnt that Kulfa is a major part of their cuisine and is used along with dal and even with meat. Purslane is also used in Lebanese cuisine and they call it Bakleh  Unfortunately, I have not seen this in the supermarkets here in Abu Dhabi.

Fenugreek Leaves Flat Bread | Methi Paratha

Main Ingredients for Kulfa Paratha

  • Red onion
  • Cumin seeds
  • Garlic cloves
  • Green chillies
  • Turmeric powder
  • Purslane leaves (stems not required for this recipe)
  • Whole wheat flour
  • Water for dough
  • Ghee or butter

How to make Kulfa Paratha?

The highlight of this paratha is that it is not stuffed, instead, you cook a spicy masala and add to the flour, knead, roll, and roast - done. How easy is that? Kulfa leaves that pairs so well with garlic and onions with all those spice powders makes this paratha a stand-alone dish and does not need any accompaniment. Just some yoghurt to wash down the heat! 😋

Fenugreek Leaves Flat Bread | Methi Paratha

Purslane Leaves Flatbread | Kulfa Paratha

Yields: 8 to 9 Parathas

INGREDIENTS

2 teaspoons oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 medium-sized onion, finely diced
4 to 5 garlic cloves, crushed and chopped finely
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 or 2 green chillies
2 cups purslane leaves
1/2 teaspoon chaat masala (optional)
2 cups wheat flour

salt if required as chaat masala is salty
water - if required to make the dough
Ghee or butter to spread 


Fenugreek Leaves Flat Bread | Methi Paratha

METHOD

  1. Heat oil in a shallow pan over medium heat then add cumin seeds and let them splutter
  2. Add the chopped onions, grated garlic, and green chillies and fry until the garlic starts to brown and onions become golden
  3. Add turmeric powder and sauté again for few seconds
  4. Add the kulfa leaves along with salt and chaat masala
  5. Stir and cook the leaves over medium flame until wilted and reduced moisture
  6. Switch off and transfer the mixture to a bowl and set aside to cool completely
  7. Once cooled, add them to the bowl of whole wheat flour and start rubbing the mixture together between your palms little at a time
  8. Start adding a little water at a time to bring the dough together and knead to a slightly sticky dough. You can grease your hands with oil while kneading or use more flour if it gets too sticky
  9. Divide the dough into equal-sized balls 
  10. Heat a tawa 
  11. Roll each dough ball into a flat thin paratha and place the rolled out paratha on the hot tawa and cook both sides with ghee or butter
  12. Serve hot with labneh and pickles
Fenugreek Leaves Flat Bread | Methi Paratha

I have picked Molokhia leaves this weekend, hoping to find some interesting recipe. So what are your favourite greens?

I have a Molokhia Chicken Stew recipe on the blog that I posted right after this for the New Year. 

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