Nom of the Month – Saag Paneer


I’m back! The past month has a been a bit nutty with moving, some unforeseen family related stuff and juggling studying. In any case, I’ve been having t incorporate cooking into my day-to-day routine (I was spoiled for 24 years living with my amazing cook of a mum!) My guy buys spinach every week since he’s a pro-smoothie type, so to save some money, we’ve been buying large bags to last us a few weeks. That being said, we aren’t able to finish it before it starts turning brown, hence trying to figure out monthly recipes that are heavy in fresh spinach.

My boyfriend cooks the more Western foods while I’ve been fulfilling our Indian cravings by cooking traditional Indian/Fijian meals. I was really craving some saag (a cooked, ‘leaf’ based curry dish – contains various greens cooked down into a delicious, dark curry) so I decided to make use of our copious amounts of spinach by making this dish!

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  • 1 tsp (5 mL) turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) olive oil
  • 1 package paneer, cut into 2 cm cubes
  • 16-20 cups fresh spinach
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) ginger, minced
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) sour cream
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh coriander and sour cream to garnish

What to do:

  1. Marinade cut up paneer with turmeric, salt and 1 tbsp of olive oil – set aside.
  2. Place fresh spinach in a pot at medium heat. Cover and allow to wilt (takes approx 5 min). Cool. Roughly chop spinach by hand or place into a food processor and pulse. Keep all the delicious juices from the spinach!
  3. Add remaining oil to a medium heated pan. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add ginger, garlic, garam masala and cumin to the onions and cook for another 5 minutes or until the mixture becomes aromatic (do not burn!) Add spinach to the mixture (juices and all) and cook for about 5 minutes on low-medium heat. If you notice the mixture is getting a bit dry, add 1/4-1/2 cup (60-125 mL) water.
  4. As spinach is cooking, fry up paneer in a separate pan until each side is golden brown – no oil needed as olive oil was added to the marinade!
  5. Cool spinach for 5-10 minutes. Spoon sour cream into spinach and mix after each spoonful. Add the paneer to the spinach/sour cream mix.
  6. Garnish with fresh coriander and a dollop of sour cream.
  7. NOM!


  • Are you a vegan? Replace paneer with extra firm tofu and sub sour cream with your non dairy fav – I was unable to find paneer at my local grocery store and the tofu subbed super well!
  • Not wanting to deal with the hassle of fresh spinach? Sub for 1 package of frozen spinach instead.
  • Eat this curry with either rice, roti, naan – or all three!

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