Though vegetarian dishes featuring rice and a variety of beans dominate Indian cuisine, India's cooking has also been influenced by traders such as the Arabs and Chinese, and invaders such as the Persians, Mongols, Turks, British and Portuguese. North Indian food features more dairy and pulses, while South Indian cooking includes more rice, curries, and fruits like coconut.
1/2 cup water
1 lb. fresh spinach, washed, de-stemmed, coarsely chopped
3 T ghee or butter
1 T finely chopped ginger
1/2 c. finely chopped onion
1 t salt
1/4 t ground cumin
1/4 t turmeric
1/2 t ground coriander
1/2 t garam masala
1 cup cheese (paneer), cut into 1-inch cubes
Combine 1/2 of the water and a handful of the spinach in a jar of a blender. Blend at high speed for 30 seconds. Keep adding spinach until about half is blended. Add a little more water, if necessary, to puree.
In a large skillet, heat the butter over moderate heat. Add the ginger and saute for one minute. Add the onions and salt and continue sauteing for 5 more minutes.
Stirring after each addition, add the cumin, turmeric, coriander, and garam masala. Then stir in the leafy and pureed spinach. Reduce the heat and cook the mixture uncovered, for 20 to 30 minutes. Most of the liquid should evaporate. At the last minute, gently add the paneer. Serve hot.
from Kate's Global Kitchen:
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This page modified January 2007
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