After a lot of trials and error, I find this is the easiest way to make delicious Palak Paneer. I use a lot of garlic cloves but trust me, it will not overpower the dish.
1 Onion chopped
1 large tomato or ¼ cup tomato puree from a can
10-12 garlic cloves, mashed
2 tsp ginger, grated
12-16 oz packet of frozen spinach
4 tsp Garam masala powder
1 tsp red chilli powder
½ slab of frozen paneer, chopped into cubes
Cumin seeds for tempering
Sauté the chopped onions in oil and add the ginger and garlic once the onions start to soften. Cook the ginger and garlic till the raw smell goes away.
Add the garam masala at this point and roast it with the onions for a few seconds. Add the chopped tomatoes or the puree.
Cover and put the heat on med-low for 5 min. If you have added the puree, it will start to release oil. The chopped tomatoes will take a little longer to soften and cook through.
At this point add the frozen spinach and again cover the pot. The spinach will begin to thaw and wilt in the steam. It’ll take about 15 min to cook through. Once the spinach has wilted, cook it with the onion-tomato mixture for another 5 min and then turn the heat off. Once the mix has cooled a little, grind it all in the blender to a smooth paste.
Transfer to the pan and add the salt and check for spice. Heat oil in a little wok and add cumin seeds to it. At this point you can add more masala or chili powder if the palak is not spicy enough. Add the paneer cubes and heat the palak through till the paneer is soft.
Palak Paneer is ready to eat with rotis, parathas or rice.