Monday, October 15, 2012

Cooking Indian food

In the US I often liked to buy those Indian food packets, which you just warm up and serve over rice. They were pretty yummy and also very simple.

Lately though, lately I've been wanting Indian food. I am especially a fan of saag paneer, and ever since reading this post by my friend Brian, I've been thinking that I should just make my own, paneer included. Actually, I think even before he blogged about it, he had told me enough to make me interested in making my own paneer.

So the mission was clear, locate cheese cloth and Indian spices. My ICA didn't have cheesecloth, so I didn't bother looking for the spices. I knew the weekend would be full of trying to find special ingredients at any store possible. (Sweden, why oh why don't you sell vegetable shortening? more on that in another post.)

We ended up at Willy's, where we found cheesecloth (no shortening though). I followed this recipe for saag paneer, which also includes directions for making paneer with lemon juice. Here you can see the cheese in the cheesecloth getting pressed between some plates.

We even saved the whey, which we cooked our rice in. High protein rice! Yum!

Here are my cheese cubes, marinating in some oil and spices.

Here is the frozen spinach I bought. The bag was full of these little frozen hockey pucks of spinach, so obviously I had to document that with a photo.

And the final product!

Overall impression: This was pretty tasty! Sadly, it did not compare to the saag paneer that I loved to get at the Jewel of India in Hanover. I guess I shouldn't have expected that, considering I am not Indian and have never cooked my own Indian food.

With more realistic expections, I think I did an alright job. The paneer was really good, but the whole dish was a little watery and also under-spiced (which might have been because I used more spinach than the recipe called for). This definitely makes me want to cook more Indian food!

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