If we talk about punjabi cuisine Palak paneer is the one dish that represents it. Although many yummy dishes like rajma chawal, kadhi chawal, chole chawal, baingan ka bharta, vadiyan tha pulav, sarso ka saag are also famous.
I think palak paneer has even made its name around the world too. And its one of the most popular dish from India.
Having said that authentic palak paneer is difficult to find in restaurants as the flavor sometimes is missing.
You may get a bright green color palak puree done chef style. But many of the grandmother’s will comment as the puree is not cooked properly.
Here I am sharing the authentic way to make palak paneer, how its actually made.
Directions to make authentic palak paneer-
2 bunches palak *see recipe notes
10-12 garlic cloves minced
2 inch peice ginger grated *see recipe notes
2 large red onions chopped
2-3 plum tomatoes chopped *see recipe notes
Salt and red chilli powder as per taste
200 gm paneer
Ghee 2-3 tbsp * use less or more as per your taste
To prepare palak puree (how to prepare spinach puree)
Wash the spinach leaves thoroughly to remove all the dirt.
Now pressure cook the leaves for 2 whistles and let it release the steam itself.
If you dont have pressure cooker heat a deep pan that can take all the leaves. Add enough water to create steam. Add all the leaves, cover and cook for 5-7 mins.
Puree the spinach leaves only(not the water).
For palak paneer-
In a heavy bottom pan heat ghee.
Once ghee is melted add the chopped onions.
Once onions become soft add mined garlic and grated ginger.
Cook till the ginger garlic is cooked and onions are browned.
Add the chopped tomatoes. Cook till soft.
Add the palak puree and cook for another 5-7 mins.
Next add the paneer in medium size chunks and cook further for 5 mins.
Let the palak paneer rest for at least 30 mins to enjoy a flavourful meal.
Enjoy with roti or makai ki roti.
If you want you can add 1/2 tsp garam masala for extra flavor.
- You can use baby spinach as well as full grown spinach. For authentic taste use baby spinach.
- Minced garlic and grated ginger provide flavor and crunch which is not the same as ginger garlic paste.
- Cook.onion, ginger garlic on a low flame to extract maximum flavor.
- Choose tomatoes wisely. The variety of tomato, its sweetness or sourness changes the taste of palak paneer. I like to add plum tomatoes(the one’s that have more pulp) and also use 1 heirloom tomatoes (desi tomato) thats sour in taste to balance overall taste.
- Use ghee as per your taste. Authentically ghee is used but you can make in olive oil or even mustard oil.
- Traditionally paneer is not browned or cooked before adding to the spinach puree. The fresher the paneer the better.
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