Saag Paneer (Curried Spinach with Cheese)
This classic vegetarian dish is Indian comfort food at its best... soft, thick and creamy spinach with cubes of golden-fried paneer cheese. Serve on a bed of cooked brown or basmati rice, or with warmed pillowy naan bread.
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 4
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 red hot chili pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 cup fresh paneer, cut into ½" cubes
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • ½ tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp cumin seed
  • 1 lb fresh spinach, finely chopped
  • ½ cup plain full-fat Greek-style yogurt
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  1. Use a food processor to pulse the onion, chili pepper, garlic and ginger into a smooth paste. Set aside.
  2. In a large, wide saucepan, fry the paneer in canola oil over medium-high heat until golden and browned on all sides. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  3. Scrape the onion puree into the pan, along with garam masala and cumin seed. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes or until onion is browned and fragrant. Add spinach, yogurt and salt, and continue cooking for 1 minute or until the spinach begins to wilt. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, for 15 minutes or until the mixture is very soft and thick.
  4. Return the paneer to the pan. Gently stir in the cream, then bring to a simmer before covering the pan once more. Continue cooking for another 10 minutes, stirring periodically, until the mixture is creamy and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice, then adjust seasoning with salt to taste.
Recipe by Crumb: A Food Blog at