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Palak Paneer – Indian Spinach and Cheese

Yield: 4 Servings


4 cups frozen spinach, thawed

1 medium tomato

5 large garlic cloves, 3 peeled and left whole and 2 peeled and diced

1-inch piece of ginger

1 green chili or jalapeño

1 tablespoon oil, I used avocado

1 large onion, finely diced

½ cup water

1-2 teaspoons Tijerina Global Spice Garam Masala (any Garam Masala will do for now)

¼ teaspoon turmeric powder

¼ teaspoon cayenne, or to taste

Kosher salt, to taste

2-3 tablespoons heavy cream or plain yogurt

1 block, 8 oz. paneer, cut into cubes

½ tablespoon kasuri methi, crushed, dried fenugreek leaves (I typically do not have this on hand, and it is difficult to find, so a fine substitute is celery leaves. Yes! Finally, some use for them other than broth!)

Fresh squeezed lemon juice, to taste, about 1 tablespoon


  1. In a blender add the spinach, tomato, 3 whole garlic, ginger and green chili/jalapeño. Puree to a smooth paste and set aside.
  2. Heat a pan on medium heat. Once hot, add the oil and then add the remaining 2 cloves of diced garlic. Sauté for few minutes until it starts brown, then add the diced onion.
  3. Cook the onion and garlic for 2-3 minutes until soft and translucent.
  4. Add in the prepared spinach puree and water and stir.
  5. Cover the pan and let it cook for 10 minutes on medium heat. The spinach will bubble a lot. Stir at regular intervals to avoid sticking to the bottom and burning.
  6. After about 10 minutes add the garam masala, turmeric powder, cayenne and salt, mix and cook for 1 minute.
  7. Add the heavy cream or yogurt and paneer and stir. Let simmer for 3-4 minutes.
  8. Remove from the heat, taste and add lemon juice and kasuri methi (celery leaves) and stir.
  9. Salt to taste and serve just like this or with a side of Saffron Rice.


**Vegan variation, substitute Paneer for Tofu and use a non-dairy cream/yogurt

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