Palak Paneer

Palak Paneer

 

I’ve made this dish off and on over the years, with frozen and fresh spinach, and with uncooked and fried paneer. I like it best with fresh, relatively mature spinach and with fried paneer. I cheat and get the frozen fried paneer available in my international grocery store. You can also fry paneer yourself; for that matter, you can make paneer from scratch, but I’m happy with the store-bought stuff.

There are many ways to make palak paneer, including using a different type of greens, such as chard or mustard greens, in which case it is more properly called saag paneer. You can cook it quickly or for a long time, use fresh or tinned tomatoes (or no tomatoes at all), and of course you can vary the spices. This version tastes pretty close to the kind you get in north Indian restaurants, but it’s not as rich or greasy, and I don’t pulverize the spinach. I find that cooking it for a longer time gives me a similar consistency and flavor without having to dragĀ out the food processor.

1 lb. fresh spinach (not baby spinach)
3 Tbsp canola oil
2 Tbsp butter
1/2 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
3 Tbsp gresh ginger
1 hot green chile
1-2 plum or vine tomatoes, peeled
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 1/2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp salt
8 oz. fried paneer
3 Tbsp full fat yogurt or cream

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