Done this one three times; once with paneer, once with firm tofu, and once with halloumi. A fine, gently warming dish each time. The tofu gives this some vegan potential, although I’m not experienced enough in cooking with soy yogurt to confirm if the dish would fully work this way. I guess coconut milk/cream could be an alternative, although this would shift the basic flavours somewhat, and I suspect there might have to be some jiggery-pokery with the spicing in that case to prevent the coconut from overwhelming what is actually a pleasantly light curry….
Palak Matar Paneer
- Vegetable or groundnut oil
- Tofu OR paneer OR halloumi, cut into cubes (although I don’t want to cramp your style; feel free to try all three at once!)
- Half a white onion, chopped fine
- 2 cloves garlic, ditto
- Ginger, turmeric, garam masala, coriander, a little chilli
- Big bag spinach leaves, chopped roughly
- Mug of frozen peas (or peas/beans mix)
- Low fat yogurt (200-400g depending on how runny you’d like the curry)
- 1-2 heaped teaspoons of plain / self-raising / gram flour
- Lemon juice (to taste)
(If using firm tofu, press for half an hour as per previous recipes).
Add the flour to the yogurt and with a fork mix thoroughly (this is to help stop the low fat yogurt separating out into curds and whey when cooked).
Heat the oil in wok and saute the tofu/cheese until lightly browned. Transfer to some paper towel on a plate and allow to drain.
Sling the onion into the same pan and cook until golden on a medium heat. Add the garlic and spices and cook for a few minutes more.
Add half the spinach and a tablespoon of water, plus the cheese/tofu. Put the lid on and cook on gentle medium for a couple more minutes, stirring once or twice.
Add the rest of the spinach, the peas, the yogurt and some salt.
Cook for about 3 minutes and then take off the lid, stir, and cook further until it has reached your preferred consistency (shouldn’t take long, this isn’t a classic slow-simmer stew).
Check the taste, add a little lemon juice if you think it needs that edge.
Serve with rice.