October 17, 2018

Palak Paneer | Cottage Cheese in Spinach Gravy (No Onion No Garlic)

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Palak Paneer absolutely needs no introduction. A very very healthy and nutritious recipe with the loaded health benefits of Palak/ Spinach and Paneer.
 By now as all of you must be aware ,I concentrate on presenting recipes as  No Onion No garlic versions, so for this Palak Paneer recipe ,I have used cashew paste to add to the richness of the gravy and also a mild nutty and sweet flavor.

Preparation Time : 20 mins
Cooking Time : 15 mins
Complexity : Simple

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2 bunches of spinach/ palak (medium sized)
small piece of ginger
2 tsp cumin seeds
10-12 cashews soaked in warm water
3-4 green chillies
150 grams paneer cut into small cubes
2 tablespoon oil.
1 tsp garam masala
salt to taste
2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp chat masala / jaljeera powder


 Preparatory Phase

  • Clean the palak well to remove any weeds or rotten leaves and then wash under running water multiple times to remove off all the mud and other dirt. 
  • You can refer to this video to know how to clean any green leafy vegetable thoroughly.
  • If the stem is tender, you can use it along with the stems or separate the stems from the leaves.
  • In a wide pan, add some water, the spinach leaves, 1-2 green chillies, 1/2 tsp cumin ,salt and some sugar. Turn off the stove as soon as the water begins to boil well and let the spinach leaves rest in that for 10-15 mins.( Salt and sugar will help retain the green color of the spinach till the end)
  • Once cooled,put the spinach in a blender along with some chopped ginger and make a fine puree out of it and keep aside.
  • Make a fine paste of the soak cashews in a blender and keep it ready.

Making the Palak Paneer

  • In a pan/ kadai heat some oil and lightly fry the paneer cubes until they turn light brown. Do not over fry them as it will become tough and rubbery. Drain the paneer cubes and keep aside.
  • In the same pan, splutter some cumin seeds and saute some green chillies .
  • Add the cashew paste and quickly stir  by adding a little water as it will stick to the pan and chances of getting burnt are more .
  • Once the raw smell of the cashew paste is gone,add some haldi and garam masala and cook it for 1-2 mins so that the masala and the cashew paste blend well.
  • Now , add the palak puree ,mix well and add 1/2 cup water. Adjust the salt if needed and let the mixture cook well for 3-4 mins. 
  • Once you see small bubbles in the gravy,add the paneer cubes , mix well and let it cook for 2-3 mins so that the paneer becomes soft and absorbs the flavor of the gravy .
  • Turn off the stove, let it rest for a few mins before serving.
  • Serve hot with any kind of rotis, naan, parathas of even with some jeera rice or plain steamed rice.

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