Crackling Spinach


When we lived in Bangalore, we must have eaten in Mainland China a billion times and the one dish that we always ordered was Crackling Spinach. Even being reminded of the  sizzling sound it made while being served on your table, makes my mouth water. Its crackling, crunchy texture and unbelievably sweet taste transforms the ordinary spinach to lofty heights.

Originally made with seaweed in Chinese cuisine, this dish has been adapted for Indian tastes by using spinach. I have adapted this recipe from Mainland China’s cookbook,  which is a very nice collection of easy to make chinese recipes.

Try it, I promise — you will be hooked!


  • Spinach Leaves- 250 gm
  • Pepper powder- 1 tsp
  • Green chilli, chopped- 1
  • Sesame seeds, roasted - 2 tsp
  • Powdered sugar- 1 tsp
  • Cornflour, enough to dust the spinach- about 1/4 cup
  • Oil - for frying
  • Salt- 1/2 tsp


1. Wash spinach leaves and separate then from the stems.

2. Slice  thinly, and spread on a couple of kitchen towels to dry completely. This would take about 30-45 minutes.

3. Dust the spinach with cornflour, taking care to cover all the leaves evenly.

4. Heat oil in a wok . When smoking hot, add the spinach. Make sure the leaves are separate and not in bunches.

5. Fry till crispy and bright green in colour. Strain and keep aside in a strainer to drain excess oil.

6. Heat a dry wok till smoking hot, dry roast the chopped green chilli.

7. Add the fried spinach. Add salt and pepper.

8. Then add the roasted sesame seeeds and toss well.

9. Sprinkle with the powdered sugar.

10. Leave on a kitchen towel to absorb the excess oil and serve hot.

Serve as a starter, or as a side to your mains.

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