spinach and paneer curry

Tom Kerridge

Paneer is a lower-fat cheese that holds its shape well during cooking, making it feel really substantial. There are some big flavours at work in this curry, which is great to eat on its own or with some saffron rice. You could also try it with a little poached chicken on the side.

Calories: 550 per serving (335 without rice)

Serves 4 people

250g paneer, cubed
¼ tsp ground turmeric
Sunflower oil spray
½ tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 tsp cumin seeds
750g frozen spinach, defrosted and drained
200ml fresh vegetable stock
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2.5cm piece of ginger, finely grated
1 long green chilli, finely chopped ½ tsp garam masala
50ml light single cream alternative
200g tomatoes, diced

to serve (optional)
240g basmati rice, cooked with salt and a pinch of saffron strands

01 Place the paneer in a bowl and sprinkle over the turmeric and ½ tsp flaky sea salt. Toss well to coat the cheese all over.

02 Heat a large non-stick sauté pan over a high heat, then spray with oil 15 times. Add the paneer and cook for 5 minutes, tossing the pan frequently so the cheese cubes turn golden brown on all sides. Remove to a plate and set aside.

03 Add the vegetable oil to the pan. When hot, add the onion and cumin seeds and cook for 5 minutes or until the onion is starting to turn golden brown.

04 Meanwhile, roughly chop a third of the spinach. Put the remaining spinach into a food processor with the vegetable stock and blend until smooth.

05 Toss the garlic, ginger and chilli into the pan and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, then add the garam masala and stir over the heat for another minute.

06 Add both the chopped and blended spinach. Return the paneer to the pan and stir through the “cream” and the tomatoes. Bring to a simmer and cook for 4-5 minutes until slightly thickened.

07 Season the curry to taste with salt and pepper and serve in warmed bowls, with saffron rice on the side, if you like.