On a cold winter night, dipping your roti or naan into a piping hot curry and scooping out ‘goodness’ and relishing it…. the feeling is comforting and warming. On those nights when you just want something homemade and simple but yet nourishing. Food which will entice everyone in the house.
One popular Indian dish is Saag or palak paneer – a mixture of greens and cheese.
Saag and Palak are nothing but different variety of greens. Saag is mustard greens which has a nice peppery taste and Palak is spinach. In most recipes the greens are cooked and mashed to a pulp. The greens are then simmered in a gravy to add the deep flavor.
This dish gives the same experience and is very easy to prepare using the InstantPot. The gravy has some ‘secret’ ingredients which gives it the depth of flavor and hides the simplistic way it was conjured up. The 3 ‘secret’ ingredients – add texture, protein-content and a twist to the taste – baby carrots, almonds and sour cream.
Lets talk about the enhancements in this unique recipe.
Using Kale in a traditional Indian recipe. Kale is a robust green which can be cooked in a gravy and will retain its shape and texture. Kale also brings with it a lot of nutrients.
Replacing Paneer with tofu, increases the overall protein content and brings down the calorie content.
Leaving Kale ‘leafy’ by chopping it finely and simmering directly in authentic flavors.
A little crushing action by using a potato masher is all needs to happen. So this is not the typical green pulp but more a leafy green gravy with tofu.
This recipe has 3 components –
1. A rich gravy which is created by blending, among other things, spices with onion and tomato
2. Finely chopped kale
3. Tofu baked in an oven to make it chewy and cut into pieces
Start off by baking the tofu block in the oven. While that is happening, blend the gravy. Cook the gravy with kale in the InstantPot. Finally add the tofu and let it soak for 10 minutes.
Enjoy this variation !
Kale Tofu recipe
- Kale – chopped finely 2 bunches
- Tofu – extra firm 1 block
- To grind to a fine paste adding ½ cup of water –
- Onion – 1 medium, Baby carrots – 3, Tomato – 1, Ginger – 2 inch piece, Turmeric root – 2 inch piece, Garlic – 5 pods, Green chillies – 5, Cilantro – 5 stalks, almonds – 15, Sour cream – 2 tbsps
- Oil for seasoning
- Cumin seeds 1 tsp
- Bay leaves 5
- Squeeze the water off tofu, coat with a thin layer of oil and salt and bake at 400 degrees oven for 30 minutes.
- Turn on InstantPot at HIGH Pressure in SAUTE mode, add oil. Add cumin seeds and let it change color. Add bay leaves and fry for 1 min.
- Add the blended gravy, add salt to taste.
- Add the chopped kale and mix well.
- Put the lid ON and cook for 10 minutes.
- Let the pressure release naturally by letting it sit for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile remove the tofu from oven and with gloves on, dice it into cubes.
- Carefully open the pot, with a potato masher, mash the kale as much as you like. We enjoy it leafy.
- Slowly add the tofu and close lid and let it soak in the gravy for 10 minutes.
- Serve hot with rice or roti.