Palak Paneer (Spinach with Home Made Cheese)

Palak is spinach in Hindi and Paneer is home made cheese or Farmer's cheese. Palak Paneer is as popular and familiar as chicken curry and a favorite of vegetarian food lovers.
My Palak Paneer recipe is easy to prepare, whether you use fresh or frozen spinach. You can make Paneer by following my recipe or buy it from the store. If prepared a few hours before serving, Paneer soaks up the spices and tastes more flavorful.
1 lb. fresh spinach (or frozen, chopped spinach, defrosted)
4 cloves garlic
3/4 inch cube ginger
1 medium tomato
2 1/2 tbsps. oil
7-8 ozs. Paneer, cut into 3/4 x 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup chopped onions
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1 tbsp. coriander powder*
1 tsp. cumin powder*
1/2 tsp. cinnamon*
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper*
1/4 tsp. clove*
1/4 tsp. cardamom*
1/8 tsp. nutmeg*
1 1/2 tsps. salt
1/2 cup + water
3 tbsps. low fat sour cream

*You can substitute 1 1/2 tablespoons of my Garam Masala for all of these spices.

  • Place rinsed spinach in a microwave safe bowl and cook for 3-4 minutes on high or until just wilted (if using frozen spinach, cook until it is heated to boiling, drain). 
  • Chop spinach using a food processor or immersion blender. I prefer to leave it a little chunky. 
  • Grind garlic and ginger and set aside. 
  • Chop or puree the tomato and set aside. 
  • In the meantime, heat a non-stick pot and fry paneer pieces in one tablespoon oil, stirring until golden brown on all sides. Drain on paper towel. 
  • Heat the same pot, add remaining oil and saute onions until brown. 
  • Add ginger-garlic paste, saute for a minute.
  • Add all the spices and salt. Stir until the spices start turn fragrant, about one minute.
  • Add tomato puree, spinach, paneer and water. Simmer uncovered for about 5 minutes.
  • Add sour cream and simmer for another minute. 
  • Taste and adjust seasonings.
  • Palak Paneer is ready to eat! 
Copyright © Rashmi Rustagi 2012. All Rights Reserved.
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