How to make it

  • Directions for Saag (Spinach Curry)
  • Grind the onion, garlic, and ginger into a fine paste.
  • In a medium saucepan, combine the paste, spinach, yogurt, buttermilk, chili powder, and garam masala. Simmer at medium heat for 20 to 30 minutes. Mash the ingredients with a potato masher. Add the half and half. Simmer until the mixture has a creamy consistency, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the cheese, simmer 5 minutes. Season with salt. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
  • Directions for Paneer (Homemade Cheese):You can use a clean dishcloth for your cheesecloth, or any other smooth cotton cloth. Make sure you haven't washed it with fabric softener, and that it's been thoroughly rinsed. If it smells freshly laundered, that's how your cheese will taste!
  • Pour the milk into the pan. Add about a teaspoonful of salt, and about a teaspoonful of ground cumin
  • Bring the milk to a gentle simmer. Keep it there for about 5 minutes. If you take your eyes off it for a second, it will boil over. If it burns, your paneer will taste funny.
  • Remove the simmered milk from the heat, and start to slowly stir in the lemon juice, about a tablespoonful at a time. The milk will begin to curdle. This is "curds and whey". If it doesn't begin to curdle, add a tiny bit of vinegar.
  • Keep stirring and adding lemon juice until the curds are thick and the whey is only slightly cloudy.
  • Drain off the whey, keeping the cheese curds.
  • Dump the curds out onto the cloth (it will be messy), wrap them up, and squeeze the cloth to get the whey out.
  • Open up the cloth and look at the curds. Taste some. If it needs a bit more salt, add some (it should not taste salty). If it needs more cumin, add some (it should be quite subtle). If you feel like adding something else, like chilli, or coriander, or anything, now is a good time
  • Fold the curds up in the cloth, in a squarish block. Put the block on one chopping board, place the other chopping board on top, then balance the big pot, full of cold water, on top
  • After a couple of hours, you will have pressed out all the whey that's going to go. Unwrap the cloth and dump it in the sink. It will need rinsed out and washed almost immediately. Clingfilm the paneer, and it will keep for a couple of weeks.
  • Cut Paneer into cubes to use in Saag, any leftover can be used on flatbread, you can even dip it in batter and deep-fry it. It tastes great. You've made cheese.

Reviews & Comments 13

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  • Euclidiana 9 years ago
    A few more details would be helpful on the curds.
    Like how long do I have to stir before the curds are thick enough?
    I've been stirring forever,(yawn) added vinegar, and just see tiny curds.
    I think I did everything according to the plan.
    But I don't know.
    What's a thick curd?
    How am I supposed to know?
    There can't be too much detail!
    There can be not enough.
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  • niklove 10 years ago
    Thank you for the step-by-step instructions on how to make cheese. Dinner was a success and everyone loved this dish!
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    " It was good "
    justitia ate it and said...
    I loved the easy instructions, but the spinach came out chewy. Next time I think I'll try using an immersion blender to get it smoother. Also, I don't think I added enough salt. Could someone tell me how much salt you added to make it taste good?
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    " It was excellent "
    fastfashion ate it and said...
    I made this dish the other night and it was AMAZING!! I can't believe I made my own cheese! I used fresh spinach instead of frozen and still turned out perfect. You got my 5 stars!
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    " It was excellent "
    trev ate it and said...
    Whoops, I did it twice, some how, and now I can't remove one of them. Sorry.
    Was this review helpful? Yes Flag
    " It was excellent "
    trev ate it and said...
    This has to be so nice. Wow, I'm lost for words and drooling everywhere. I just have to get this done today! Thanks for posting this one!
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  • lanijoy 13 years ago
    Thank you! I love saag the leftovers on a poached egg. Lani
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  • falafel_fanatic 13 years ago
    I love this dish!
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  • lunasea 13 years ago
    This sounds outstanding - can't wait to try it. Thanks so much for the post... =)
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  • turlak 13 years ago
    Houston does have good Indian food! Now I know why I go out to eat this stuff! If I ever get brave enough, I will have to try this!
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  • legoflamb 13 years ago
    Wow I've see a lot of recipies for Saag Paneer, but this is the only one that explains how to make the paneer! Bookmarked!
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    " It was excellent "
    berry ate it and said...
    Great! Thanks for share it, rated 5!
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  • kukla 13 years ago
    This is a fantastic recipe -- and thanks for adding the method for making the paneer, too :) Great post, Abermouse :)
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  • moidhu 13 years ago
    thank you a lot!
    it's mouthwatering!
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    " It was excellent "
    cheryilyn ate it and said...
    Thank you finding this. It is absolutly my favorite dish at our local Indian restaurant. I have been looking for a good recipe for it.
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