Sweet Potato, Spinach and Paneer Curry
I love sweet potatoes. Adding their lovely orangey flesh to any dish just adds a splash of cheerful colour as well as their delicious sweet flavour. They are often a very good price when sold loose and keep much better than regular potatoes, so you always have something in the house for whipping up an easy tea.
This tasty, vegetarian curry adds paneer, that Indian cheese that soaks up flavour and enhances any dish. It can be bought in blocks and it also keeps for ages in the fridge, suiting the casual nature of this dish, or what my friend Claire calls ‘kitchen surprise’, made using whatever you have in the house around payday!
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp fenugreek seeds
- 1 tsp onion seeds
- 1 tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 red chilli
- 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 200ml water
- 1 x 400ml tin coconut milk
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely diced
- 1 x 400g tin spinach or 250g frozen and thawed spinach
- 125g paneer, cubed
1. Start by roasting all the spices and the dried chilli in a dry frying pan over a medium heat until the mustard seeds start to pop and they all smell very aromatic. Make sure they don’t burn or they will become bitter, so keep a beady eye on them. Take off the heat immediately. Crush lightly using a pestle and mortar.
2. Add the chopped tomatoes to the slow-cooker crock and purée them using a hand blender so they are very smooth. Add the water and the coconut milk along with the toasted spices.
3. Peel the sweet potatoes and cube into 4cm chunks. Add to the slow cooker with the onion and garlic.
4. Put the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for 6–7 hours. About 20 minutes before you are ready to eat, add the spinach and the cubed paneer. Stir well and put the lid back on for 20–30 minutes to heat through and allow the cheese to soak up the flavours. Serve with rice or naan breads.