Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Saag Tofu...Take 1

I finally have an oven....YAY! It has felt like I was missing a limb not having an operable oven (yes, I am that attached).

Anywho, back to cooking!

This is a wink & a nudge to saag paneer. I was inspired when watching "Aarti Party" a few weeks ago and was going to try to make my own paneer but had some tofu I needed to use up hence tonight's recipe.

I happen to love any indian flavored food. Well, anything vegetarian these days. I've been eating a lot of curry dishes lately so I thought I would branch out and try another indian favorite.

This is my first was good. But it will get better. Couldn't wait to share though (since I got a new oven!!!).

You will need....

For the "paneer"
1 Package Extra Firm Tofu

3 T canola oil
1 t turmeric
1/2 t crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 t garlic
1/2 t kosher salt
1/4 t paprika

Drain Tofu and cut into 32 squares. On a baking sheet, layer squares between a clean dish towel. Top with another baking sheet and cover with a couple heavy objects that you may happen to have lying around....I used a gallon of water. Allow to press for at least 30 minutes to remove all extra moisture. In the mean time, in a small bowl (preferably one with a tight fitting lid), mix together marinade ingredients and set aside. Once tofu is pressed add to marinade and toss (lightly) to coat. Place in fridge and allow to marinate for at least an hour (I left mine in for about 5.5).

Preheat oven to 375. Place tofu squares on a baking sheet lightly coated with cooking spray. Cook 20 minutes, turning halfway.

Next comes the "Saag"
2 T Unrefined Coconut Oil
1 t coriander seeds
1 t cumin seeds
1/2 medium (or 1 small) onion, diced
1 jalapeno, deseeded & diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 t minced ginger
1 10 package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
3/4 c coconut milk
1 t salt
1/2 t garam masala
1/8 t cinnamon
1/8 t nutmeg

In a large saute pan, heat coconut oil over medium high heat. Once heated, add cumin & coriander seeds~allow to "cook" (and by cooking I mean popping in the hot oil until you start to smell them--will be very quick). Add onion, jalapeno, garlic, ginger and some salt and saute until tender~about 5 minutes. Next add spinach breaking apart to separate and allow to warm through about 1 minute. Pour in coconut milk, garam masala, cinnamon, nutmeg and remaining salt and allow to come to a boil. Let cook for a few minutes. Next, add in tofu and toss lightly to incorporate with the spinach.

Doesn't it look just like paneer?!?! So delicious. Serve along side grain of choice (I cooked up rice in the rice cooker with some coconut milk & water) and/or (whole wheat) naan {why not have both}. And feel good knowing that although this seems really intense, it took me about as much time to cook this as it did for my rice cooker to lazily cook my rice...about 25 minutes.

Do you have any favorite indian recipes besides curries? Please share...I am always looking for new Indian food to make :)


  1. I -love- Indian food, especially dishes with tofu paneer. I don't know what it is, but that creamy/chewy tofu texture just makes every meal so much more satisfying... One of my favorite dishes though is bhindi masala (essentially curried and stewed okra.) The key is to allow plenty of time for it to cook, and use frozen okra so that it's less slimy.

  2. This looks SO delicious! I actually like the tofu version better since I've been trying to eat less cheese :-) I've never tried making this before but I think I should!

    My hands-down favorite Indian dish is Channa Masala - chickpeas in a flavorful red sauce - Mmm!