Thursday, September 29, 2011

Saag Paneer with Tofu

Hi all,

I made my Saag Paneer tonight. I didn't take pictures because my kitchen at night is a black hole and let's be honest...Saag Paneer is not pretty anyway. It's an Indian spinach dish with yogurt, and typically made with cheese. I chose to make it with tofu. This is a pretty simple dish to make, it only took me about 20 minutes. However, it takes a food processor and I used two it kind of makes a mess. But once you get the hang of it, it's really easy.

1 onion chopped
2 cloves garlic chopped
2 TBSP butter
2 tsp grated fresh ginger
2 tsp curry powder (I used freshly pounded curry mix from my farmer's market)
1 package tofu cut into large chunks (I am really liking Trader Joe's organic sprouted tofu)
1-2 pounds fresh greens (I used 2 bags of Trader Joe's fresh baby spinach and 1 bunch of beet greens. You can use any non-bitter greens that you like. I bet chard would be great. Last time I made this, I used 2 bunches of spinach from the farmer's market and that was the right amount. Tonight I think I had a bit too much, but it still worked. You want about 3-4 cups of processed greens.)
1 cup Fage 2% plain yogurt.

If you want this dish to be vegan, substitute the butter with EVOO and the yogurt with soy yogurt.

Saute the onion, ginger, garlic and curry powder until fragrant, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, saute or roast your tofu until it has a crisp outer layer. Set aside.
Now, at the same time, comes the annoying part. You have to puree the greens in the food processor. Do it in batches, pushing the greens down all the while. Once the spinach is very finely processed (think pesto), then add it to the onion mixture. Some recipes said to pre-blanch the greens, but I found it unnecessary and found the water from the raw greens helped to deglaze my pan. I am sure that I retained more of the nutrients this way as well.
Once the greens are cooked down and the water evaporates, add salt, and stir in the yogurt off the heat. Add the tofu at the last minute and stir in. Voila! This is SO tasty, I really encourage you to make it.

This made three entree servings. I served it with whole wheat naan for dipping. You definitely want something to dip into the smooth and creamy spinach! If you are having this in addition to other dishes as traditional Indian food is served, it would serve 6. I bet it would taste great over rice too. You could even add in some veggies...just nothing too acidic as to curdle the yogurt.

I hope everyone's week is going great!

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