Friday, 30 May 2014

Spinach & Asparagus with Paneer

Well, we are about 3 weeks behind in getting things into the garden, so as usual for May there isn't much time to cook or post! Still, I have that big package of paneer in the fridge, and spinach and asparagus from the garden, and a ton of garlic left from last year to use here it goes, and very good too. You could serve this with rice, or pasta, or even on toast.

4 servings
1 hour prep time

Spinach & Asparagus with Paneer

1 teaspoon cumin seed
2 teaspoons coriander seed

1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon Aleppo pepper
2 tablespoons finely minced fresh ginger
4 to 5 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1 bunch spinach (about 6 cups loosely packed)
250 grams ( 1/2 pound) asparagus
300 grams paneer
2 tablespoons mild vegtable oil
1 cup yogurt
1 teaspoon arrowroot or cornstarch

Toast the cumin seed, coriander seed, and black peppercorns in a dry skillet until fragrant. Turn them into a dish to cool, then grind them. Mix them with the salt and Aleppo pepper and set aside.

Peel and mince the ginger and garlic. Wash the spinach, and pick it over, discarding any yellowed leaves or tough stems. Rinse again and drain it very well. Chop it roughly. Wash and trim the asparagus, and cut it into bite-sized pieces. Cut the paneer into bite-sized slices.

Use a little of the oil to grease a large, heavy skillet. Heat it over medium-high heat, then cook the paneer pieces for a few minutes on each side, until well browned. Remove them and set them aside.

Add the remaining oil (about 1 1/2 tablespoons) to the pan, and cook the asparagus until it just turns colour to a brighter green. Add the ginger, garlic, and spices, and mix in well, cooking for another minute or two. Add the very well drained spinach, and cook until it is completely wilted, turning it and mixing it to cook it evenly.

Mix the arrowroot into the yogurt, then mix it into the pan of vegetables. Mix in the paneer slices, and continue simmering and stirring occasionally very gently until everything is well amalgamated and looks done to your liking - at the very least, the cheese should be thoroughly hot again.

Last year at this time I made Poached Eggs & Asparagus on Grilled Cheese Toasts

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