Sunday, February 5, 2012

Curry Palooza #10: Saag Paneer

The Curry-Palooza event my friend, Grapefruit, of the blog Needful Things, and I started with much enthusiasm last April, has flagged. 

I am determined, however to keep this event going. After much deliberation, we will re-launch the event in the spring with a different format and start with an exciting GIVE-AWAY! So stay tuned. 

Meanwhile, here is another curry dish I made.  Saag Paneer is one of the things I order when visiting Indian Restaurants. When I decided I wanted to make it, I started by Googling and kept getting directed to Palak Paneer. So I asked my Indian Food expert, Grapefruit, what is the difference between Saag Paneer and Palak Paneer because both recipes seemed the same to me. She told me Palak is spinach and Saag is mustard greens. 

When I shopped for greens for this dish, my regular grocery store had the most beautiful and amazing winter greens. I selected spinach, mustard greens, and turnip greens. The resulting dish was absolutely delicious! I looked at several recipes and this is what I came up with.

Saag Paneer
2 pounds fresh winter greens, thoroughly washed, chopped
12 ounces paneer, cut into cubes
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
2 tsp. chopped ginger
2 tsp. coriander powder
1 tsp. turmeric powder
1/4 - 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper, to taste
1 Tbsp. oil plus more for frying the paneer
1 tsp. cumin seeds
Pinch of asafetida (hing)
1/2 tsp., to taste
1/2 cup cream, as needed

Blend tomatoes and ginger to make a puree. Stir in coriander, turmeric, and cayenne and set aside.

Pan fry the paneer cubes, in a little oil, until golden. Drain on paper towels and set aside.

Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a wok. Add cumin seeds and asafetida. after the seeds crack, stir in the tomato puree mixture, and let it cook a few minutes to reduce and thicken.

Add the greens, and let it cook, covered, on low heat for about 10 minutes  Add cream and let it cook for another 5 minutes.

Gently fold in the paneer and add more cream, if necessary, for desired consistency. Cover and simmer for 4 - 5 minutes.

1 comment:

  1. ohhh. that looks ridiculously good with the vegetables. If paneer is still on sale, I might give that a try shortly. Although I fear I would eat it all.

    We just substituted a big chunch of paneer for chicken in a butter chicken recipe and it tasted great, although I was accused of adding too many peas.