Slow cookers are a perfect answer to a busy schedule. Whether returning from work or from kid’s activities, if you have your meal set in a slow cooker then you have one less thing to worry about. Before leaving for work, do a small amount of work in the morning and you come home to a meal that is half cooked – all that is left is some final touch ups, cook some chapatis and you are all set. Dinner ready in 30 minutes – now that’s exciting and comforting!!
Today’s recipe is tested and tried many times in my kitchen and every time it’s a winner. Meals prepared in slow cooker are very healthy as it uses very little oil or no oil at all (besides the tadka/tempering). Also, slow-cooking is a very gentle method and helps in retaining the nutrients of veggies as compared to other cooking methods.
RECIPE DETAIL – I have used frozen spinach for this recipe but feel free to use fresh spinach leaves (500 gms of fresh spinach leaves). Add everything to the slow cooker, close the lid, set the timer and you are all set in 5 hours. After the specified cooking time, prepare the tadka/tempering. I like to add some besan (gram flour) to the tadka and cook until besan is light brown in color. Besan adds a rich texture and tends to absorb water and thicken the spinach. Finish the recipe by adding cooked paneer pieces and adjust seasonings. Serve hot with warm kulchas.
Another way to cook and retain a beautiful color of spinach would be to add onion, tomatoes, ginger and garlic along with salt and water to the slow cooker. Set the timer for 4 hours. After the mentioned cooking time, mix in blanched spinach, all the spices and cook for 40 minutes on HIGH. Once the cooking time is over, puree the spinach, adjust seasonings, add tadka and enjoy!!
Looking for palak paneer cooked over the flame – click here.
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Palak Paneer in slow cooker or crockpot
FOR BOILING SPINACH
- 250 grams or 1 cup Frozen chopped spinach
- 1 tablespoon Ginger paste
- 2 cloves of Garlic
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 small Tomato, chopped
- 3 tablespoon Tomato puree or freshly grated tomatoes
- 2 cups Water
- Salt to taste
- 1.5 teaspoon Haldi
- 250 grams or 14-15 pieces of Paneer
- 1.5 teaspoon Cumin seeds (Jeera)
- 1 teaspoon Degi Mirch or Red chili Powder
- 1 tablespoon Besan (Chickpea flour)
- 1 tablespoon Ghee/Oil
- 2 teaspoon Coriander powder (sukha dhaniya) (do not add in tadka- add at the last)
- 1 tablespoon Garam Masala Powder (do not add in tadka- add at the last)
- Assemble ingredients for spinach/palak.
- In a slow cooker add palak.
- Add chopped onions..
- Add ginger paste...
- Add chopped tomato and tomato puree.
- Add garlic pods.
- Pour water..
- Add salt and turmeric powder and..
- Mix it well.
- Close the lid and set the timer on HIGH setting for 5 hours.
- Meanwhile cut paneer in cubes or triangles. Heat and grease a tawa or griddle. Place paneer pieces on the hot griddle and cook until evenly brown from all the sides. Remove from heat and set it aside.
- After 5 hours.
- Using a hand blender....
- Grind spinach/palak to a fine paste. Add coriander powder, garam masala powder and mix. Cover and let it simmer.
- Meanwhile assemble ingredients for tadka.
- Heat ghee/oil in a pan, add cumin seeds and besan. Cook until besan turns light brown in color.
- Pour tadka/tempering over palak/spinach and mix it well.
- Adjust seasonings and mix in paneer pieces. Cover and let it simmer for another 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, unplug it and feel free to add some cream and serve hot with warm rotis.