The traditional version of this dish, Palak Paneer is my top pick when I eat Indian out. I do know that in Indian dishes, restaurants will often add lots of butter and cream (which is obviously delicious but not exactly low calorie). This is a delicious treat when eating out but should be kept as exactly that- a treat :) BeacuseI love this dish so much I decided to attempt to make a healthier, lower calorie version at home :) I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to make too!
I have also been following a low FODMAP diet for the last week since my IBS has flared up, so I have made this recipe low FODMAP too by leaving out the onion and garlic. So if you suffer from a sensitive tummy- this recipe would be a good choice for an easy week night meal. (Also check ingredients in curry powder as some may contain onion/garlic. If you don't have a sensitive stomach, you can definitely use some onion and garlic to add more flavour.)
2 packages tofu (make sure to choose an extra firm one)
1 Tbsp olive oil for frying (I used garlic infused olive oil instead of adding garlic to make it low FODMAP)
2 tsp olive oil/garlic infused oil to brush the tofu OR spray and cook
3 Tbsp curry powder
1 green chilli, chopped
1 tsp turmeric
1 Tbsp cumin
1/4 tsp ginger powder
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup low fat lactose free plain yoghurt (FODMAP friendly) OR soy yoghurt (to make it vegan)
2 large bags spinach (800g)
Basmati rice (cooked according to packet instructions)
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
2. Drain the tofu, cut into cubes and place in between 2 layers of roller towel with a heavy pot or pan pressing down on top for 15- 20 minutes to drain the excess fluid. Prepare a baking tray with baking paper and use a brush to lightly brush olive oil or garlic infused oil over the tofu (or use spray and cook). Season with salt and lay out evenly on the baking sheet.
3. Bake the tofu for 10-15 minutes on one side, then remove from the oven, turn each piece over and bake for a further 10-15 minutes. Set aside.
3. Meanwhile, cook the brown basmati rice according to packet instructions.
3. Rinse and then blanch the spinach by adding to salted boiling hot water for 2 minutes and then placing in ice cold water for 2 minutes (this stops the cooking and keeps the nice green colour)
3. Drain the excess water and add the spinach and the chopped green chilli to the blender. Blend until puree. (You can also add 1-2 garlic cloves here if you like)
4. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil/garlic infused oil in a pan on a medium heat. Add the curry powder, turmeric, ginger powder. (You can add 1 medium chopped onion and more garlic now if you like). Stir well.
5. Add the blended spinach to the pan and about 1/2 cup water and the yoghurt. Stir again and simmer for 6-7 minutes. Add salt to taste.
6. Add in the baked tofu and cook and stir until the tofu is well mixed with the spinach and the dish is completely heated through.
7. Serve with 1/2 - 1 cup brown basmati rice.
For personalized guidance in making healthy food choices at home or when out socializing, book a consultation here: https://www.gabilaskerdietician.com/book-online.