Palak Paneer or Cottage Cheese in Spinach Curry
Palak Paneer | What is Palak Paneer?
Palak paneer is a vegetarian dish, consisting of paneer in a thick paste made from puréed spinach, called palak in Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, and other Indian languages. The terms palak paneer and saag paneer are sometimes used interchangeably but in fact they are different.
What is the difference between Saag Paneer & Palak Paneer?
Saag paneer is different from traditional palak paneer because Saag paneer contains other green leafy vegetables, such as mustard greens, whereas palak paneer only contains spinach.
What is the history behind Palak Paneer?
Saag is consumed in the region of Punjab in the cooler months. Traditionally, saag paneer evolved into palak paneer to suit the palate of the people who lived beyond the borders of Punjab and preferred a more urbane menu (since spinach was introduced to the subcontinent much later than the locally grown mustard green).
Saag and palak (since its arrival in the subcontinent) was the rural people’s food, and the robust homemade paneer saag or palak paneer union fit the hardworking lifestyle of the village people, who laboriously working the agricultural lands of the fertile province.
They almost always propagated the consumption of desi ghee (clarified butter), desi makhan (butter), lassi (yogurt drink), desi paneer (cottage cheese) and chaach (buttermilk), and this practice has since carried to urban Punjab as well. A heavy cuisine it may be but its organic goodness is nutritious like no other.
How is Palak Paneer made?
Palak Paneer is a popular North Indian curry made of blanched spinach and soft paneer. To make Punjabi palak paneer recipe you cook shallow fried paneer cubes in a healthy spinach gravy, which is sautéed with finely balanced curry spices in aromatic ghee. Additionally, this recipe may use milk cream to bring in rich creamy texture.
What do I serve Palak Paneer with?
Palak paneer is served hot with a side such as roti, naan, paranthas, makki di roti, or boiled rice. It can also be served with onions on the side for a more traditional approach.