Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Ali's easy-peasy Indian Spinach dish - the slow cooker way

Well folks, I'm back, dabbling my toes in the blogging water after 6 months of caring for an insomniac baby. There hasn't been time to write, but cook you must and the slow cooker has bubbled away merrily in the corner on many occasions. Sometimes, I even remembered to get out the camera.                                                                                       
This is a delicious and easy dish. I'm not entirely sure of its provenance as it was passed on via several people and then adapted by me for the pot but it is a lovely side dish for any Indian meal or can be a vegetarian main dish with some rice, ideally brown for preference. The Ali in question though is a very English Alison, not an Ali Babar, or an Ali of any other exotic provenance. She's also the best kind of best friend a girl could have so this one's dedicated to her!   

400g / 2 boxes frozen spinach, whole leaf or chopped, ideally partially thawed but not drained
(if you haven't thawed the spinach, add a little extra cooking time)
150 - 250 g feta cheese or paneer (optional)
2 tsp chopped fresh ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp garam masala

dab of butter to fry the spices in


Fry your spices in the butter  in a small frying pan or skillet, stirring gently for 1 minute or until fragrant.

Dump everything except the cheese or paneer into the slow cooker and switch onto Low. Cook for 4-7 hours. Add the cheese, if using, in the last 10-30 minutes to heat through and melt slightly. Serve with rice.


In a house where few recipes, even good ones, get a second outing, this has been repeated many times. Adapting it for the slow cooker has made a lazy dish even easier to prepare.  The spices were very balanced and make the spinach interesting but not hot spicy. I used a bit more ginger than this but it was a little overpowering so I've adjusted it down here. You can leave out the feta or paneer if you are having it as a side dish but it's an easy veggie main course with the cheese. The spinach didn't come out watery - just enough water evaporated to make it perfect.

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