It’s currently raining here in Atlanta and as I type this post Sara Tavares is playing in the background. And in the distance I can hear my other half in the other room painting his little heart out. Last time I peaked in, he was painting on a canvas 3 times the size of him…and I can make out big ol’ tree. Anyway, enough about my afternoon and more about this dish. I made this dish in a effort to finally come up with my own recipe for one of my favorite spinach dishes. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve ordered it out, but let’s just say, it can fit on more than two hands. *smiles* Mhmm…my thoughts exactly. Now this is truly my rendition and is inspired by what I’ve seen called Palak Paneer, which is a type of Saag and I’ve also seen it called Saag Paneer, depending on where you go or where you’re from. But for now, just know it’s so good and to not let all that intimidate you to experiment and give this recipe a try.
I didn’t go too heavy on the spices for this dish, but I added just enough to genuinely taste something magical in each bite. And you can adjust those to suit your taste buds. I decided to pan fry the paneer (cheese) in a little coconut oil. I’ve been on a Halloumi Cheese kick lately, and I actually happen to like it firm and crispy for this dish, but you can certainly omit that step if you choose. If you’re vegan, and enjoy eating Tofu, then I would recommend substituting the Paneer for Tofu. I also chose to leave the spinach slightly chunky, but you can put the spinach through a food processor for a bit, to get a smoother consistency.
Recipe: Serves 3 – 4
adapted from here…
10 oz. of raw Spinach – roughly 6 – 8 cups lightly packed (rinsed, hard stems cut off and finely chopped with a big knife)
8 oz. of Paneer (cut into small bite size cubes)
2 – 3 tablespoons of Coconut Oil(or oil of your choice)
1 medium Tomato (quartered, seeded, then diced into small pieces)
1 medium Onion (diced)
1 clove of Garlic (minced)
1/2 inch piece of Ginger Root (minced)
1 small jalapeno (or a comparable pepper (seeded and diced very small))
1/4 teaspoon of Ground Turmeric
1 teaspoon of Ground Coriander
1/2 teaspoon of Cumin Seeds
1/2 teaspoon of Garam Masala (or a little more, if you really like that spice)
8 tablespoons of Unsweetened Coconut Milk or a little over 1/2 of a cup (but you can use a little more if you’d like)
Salt to taste
In a large frying pan, heat oil on a low – medium heat, then add in chunks of cheese and fry/brown them on several sides until slightly golden. Set them on a separate plate or dish. In the same pan, at the same temperature, add in cumin seeds, turmeric, coriander, and garam masala and heat them for a couple minutes then add in onions, tomatoes, garlic, and ginger and saute them until the onions are translucent and the tomatoes have broken down some.
Add the spinach to the skillet and allow it to wilt down some as you saute it for a few minutes. Then add the cheese and coconut milk into the frying pan with everything else and let it simmer on a low heat for 10 – 15 minutes, so that all the flavors can marry together.
Brown or White Basmati or Long Grain Rice
Serve and hope you Enjoy! xoxo