Palak Paneer (Spinach with Cottage Cheese)

Palak Paneer (Spinach with Cottage Cheese)

The best palak paneer I have had is from a restaurant called Moti Mahal, not far from where we grew up in Delhi. I had to try a few times before I developed this version that is quite close to the taste I remember from my childhood.


Spinach leaves 1/2 kg, washed, steamed and puréed

Onion 1 medium, sliced fine

Garlic 6 cloves, sliced in half

Ginger 1” piece, julienned

Tomato 1 medium, sliced fine

Red chilli powder 1/2 tsp

Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp

Coriander powder 1/2 tsp

Salt to taste

Water 3 cups

Paneer or cottage cheese 200 g, cut into cubes

Oil 4 tbsp


Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan and fry the paneer cubes till they turn a light crispy brown. Take them out with a slotted spoon and keep aside.

Add onion slices to the same oil and fry till they turn golden and translucent. Scrape the paneer bits as you fry the onions.

Add the puréed spinach and stir well.

Add the water, salt, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and coriander powder.

Add the garlic. Use the smaller Indian garlic instead of the plumper Chinese ones. They have more flavour.

Add the tomato slices.

Reduce the heat and cook covered for 20 minutes.

Add the fried paneer cubes and continue to cook till the gravy thickens.

Garnish with the julienned ginger and serve hot with rice, naan, puris or paranthas.

Saag Gosht (Spinach with Mutton)

Saag Gosht (Spinach with Mutton)

Spinach with mutton is a combo that few can say no to. Winter is a season when spinach is available in plenty and this is something that tastes delicious as temperatures plunge.


(Serves 5)

Mutton 500 g

Spinach 500 g

Yoghurt 1 cup

Red chilli powder 2 tbsps

Salt to taste

Turmeric 1 tsp

Coriander powder 1 tsp

Pepper powder 1/2 tsp

Ginger 2” piece

Garlic 6 cloves

Onion 1 large, chopped

Tomato 1 large, chopped

Bay leaf 1

Cumin seeds 1 tsp

Cinnamon stick 1” piece

Cloves 3

Vegetable oil 2 tbsps


Divide the ginger into two and crush one half with three cloves of garlic. Slice the other half into slivers. Slice the rest of the garlic cloves.

Marinate the mutton with the crushed ginger-garlic paste, yoghurt, chilli powder, salt, coriander powder and pepper powder. Rest in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours.

Boil the spinach and purée in a blender.

Pour oil in a pressure cooker and add cumin seeds. When they stop sputtering, add the bay leaf, cinnamon and cloves.

Add the onions and sauté till they turn translucent.

Add the garlic slices and fry for a few seconds. Be careful not to burn the garlic or the curry will turn bitter.

Add the marinated mutton and fry for five minutes. Add the tomatoes.

Add about half a cup of water and cook on high for one whistle. Reduce the heat and cook for three whistles. Let the cooker cool.

Add the puréed spinach and cook till the gravy thickens.

Garnish with the ginger slices and serve hot with rice, paranthas or whole wheat bread.

Spinach and Egg Rice

Spinach and Egg Rice

This is a dish you can make if guests surprise you. It takes hardly any time. Ten minutes to assemble the dish on the gas and six minutes in the microwave, and voila, it is ready. It is a balanced meal with rice, spinach, mushrooms, egg and cheese. The flavours of Italian herbs and red chilli flakes give it a gentle boost.


(Serves 3)

Cooked rice 2 cups

Onion 1 large, chopped

Spinach 6 cups, chopped

Mushrooms 1 cup, chopped

Eggs 2

Cheddar cheese 1 cup, grated

Italian herb mix 1 tsp

Chilli flakes 1 tbsp

Pepper powder 2 tsps

Salt to taste

Vegetable oil 1 tbsp


Take cooked rice, basmati or any long-grained variety is best. If it is made the night before and kept in the refrigerator, it is even better. Fluff it up with a fork and keep aside.

Add oil to a wok and fry the onions. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 3-4 minutes.

Add the spinach and continue to sauté for another 4-5 minutes till the leaves are wilted. Add chilli flakes, Italian herbs and pepper.

Add the rice and salt and mix well.

Transfer to a glass microwave dish and spread it evenly.

Break the eggs over the rice, sunny side up.

Sprinkle salt and pepper and spread the cheese over it.

Microwave it for 6 minutes and serve hot.