To intensify the simple seasonings, Martha's friend Madhur Jaffrey first fries the fennel and cumin seeds in oil -- a method known as "tarka," which coaxes more flavor out of the spices by heating them. The spicy spinach is delicious with chicken, lamb, beef, or rice.
Do you really mean 3 POUNDS of spinach?! Whatever you say Martha, only the Indian meal I served was in name only as the lovely spices used were lost in the 3 POUNDS of spinach. ( If I used my own instincts I would have used three BUNCHES of spinach and had a more exciting dish. . . . Oh well, next time.)