I should start by stating that this is not an authentic saag paneer. Though the more I looked into it, the more I questioned what an ‘authentic’ saag paneer looked like. British curry house versions often use pureed (tinned?) spinach with small, pale cubes of un-spiced paneer dotted throughout. It’s garlicky deliciousness, in its own right – but, (in my humble opinion), is better as a side dish rather than a healthy, mid-week main – which is the aim with this, (my favourite!), version.
It’s unclear whether or not a Saag Paneer should be wet or dry. My preference lies with a wet one – who doesn’t love a bit of sauce?!
Unlike lots of spinach recipes, I don’t bother with any squeezing. This applies regardless of whether you’re cooking with fresh or frozen spinach. I can’t see the point of squeezing out green, spinach-flavoured juice only to replace it with water for a sauce.
I make this recipe frequently, and love it for its speed and healthy-credentials. Saag Paneer also has broad appeal (suitable for vegetarians, and the paneer can be replaced with tofu for a vegan version). It’s a mild recipe – lovers of heat might want to add a half teaspoon of Cayenne Chilli Powder alongside the (milder) Kashmiri Chilli Powder, for more of a kick, or serve with a big spoonful of hot lime pickle.