Sag Paneer / साग पनीर

Ghee and Garam Masala in
An Indian Classic

How to cook delicious and healthy Asian dishes using tomatoes


Sag Paneer is one of the standards of Indian classical cuisine.  There are quid a few ingredients, but if they are organized in their several Mixtures, preparation is fairly streamlined.

Sag Paneer / साग पनीर



1 recipe Paneer / पनीर
2 pounds fresh Spinach
2 tablespoons Clarified Butter, Ghee   / घी

Mixture No. 1:
1 tablespoon ground Coriander
1½ teaspoons Cumin Seeds
½ teaspoon Turmeric

Hand of fresh ginger from Hawaii

Fresh Ginger

Mixture No. 2:
1 large Onion, finely chopped
3 large Tomatoes, peeled, seeded, finely chopped

Mixture No. 3:
1½ cups Water
1½ to 2 teaspoons Salt
1 small finger Ginger, about an inch long

Cooking with limes


Mixture No. 4:
1 teaspoon Garam Masala / गरम मसाला
Fresh Lime Juice to taste


First, prepare one recipe of Paneer.  Set aside.

Next, remove the stems from the Spinach and chop into small pieces.  If fresh Spinach not available, you may use two packages of frozen Spinach, 10 ounces each.  Set the Spinach aside.

Next prepare the various Mixtures and seer aside each in a small dish near the stove top.  The Ginger should be peeled and finely chopped.

To prepare the dish, first put a wok over fig fire and heat until it is very hot, almost smoking. When the wok is hot, put i the Mixture No. 1.  Stir while they are browning and release their fragrance, which takes only a few seconds.  They will sizzle when you first put them in.

Immediately put in Mixture No. 2.  Cook and stir until the onions are browned but not burned.

Next add Mixtue No. 3.  Reduce fire to low.  Stir until the Salt is dissolved.  Then put in the Spinach and simmer covered until the Spinach is tender, about 8 to 10 minutes. Check the consistency – it should be thicker than soup but not like a puree.  You may want to add some more Water if necessary.

Just before serving, add the Paneer and Mixture No. 4. Cover again and heat very briefly until the Paneer is hot.


View of India, Delhi, Chandni Chowk, black and white photo, 1960s

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