Palak Paneer Kachori
Palak Paneer Kachori – updated on 06/03/2021
Palak Paneer Kachori is a deep fried snack where the flaky spinach pastry is filled with a spicy and delicious paneer filling. Best enjoyed hot with a chutney of your choice. Traditionally Gujarati kachori is filled either with fresh peas, fresh pigeon peas or with moong dal. Palak is the Hindi word for Spinach and Paneer is soft cottage cheese.
Created For My Kids When They Were Little
My kids love paneer and so this recipe was created specially for them. By adding fresh spinach puree to the pastry dough, made it more enticing for them. They would ask me to make a wagon full so that they could enjoy them for dinner, take them in their break time box and share with their friends. Birthday parties and the request for Palak Paneer Kachoris was always there.
Memories Aug 2013: The saga finally ends!
I believe that certain superstitious things we do or keep have a lot of meaning. Whenever I travel outside Mombasa, I usually take along my precious prayer beads (mala) with me. It precious because my mum had given it to me. I usually carry it in my handbag and always get the feeling that things will be alright and God is with me. However, when we went to Nairobi for our Canadian visa application, I did not carry the mala. The same happened for the subsequent two trips and I feel that all the problems we faced could have been because I broke the norm.
Yes I do understand that karma was playing its part but human beings need certain assurances that all is going to be well. Its like a baby hugging its favourite teddy, a comforting blanket, a delicious thumb or like my nephew, he needed those soft labels that one has on the clothes. However, attending a Satyanarayan katha, Shiv pooja and Hanuman Chalisa all at the beginning of Shravan month did help. Well, that’s what I feel. We finally have got our visas for 8 years and by mid September we will be visiting my younger son in Montreal. I am so so excited as it will be our first trip to Canada. And I will not forget to carry my mala.
Palak Paneer Kachori
After the kids left home, I use to make them occasionally for Tea Time Parties. However, once entertaining big groups at home stopped, so did making these delicious snacks. Wanting to share some yummy snacks with my neighbor, remembered these Palak Paneer Kachoris. So made them after such a long long time.
Other Snacks That You Surely Will Enjoy
- Mini Vada Pav
- Ambode/Masala Vada
- Moong Paniyaram
- Bread Rolls
- White Dhokra/Idra/Idada
- Siddu/ Sidku
- Mixed Dal Paddu
- Cabbage and Spinach Muthiya
- Paneer Samosa
- Hara Bhara Kebabs
- Dahi Papdi Chaat
- Methi Doodhi Muthiya
- Fresh Tuvar/ Lilva Kachori
- Matar/ Peas Kachori
- Moong Dal Dhokra
- Vatidar Na Bhajia
- Papdi No Lot/ Khichu
- Vegetable Masala Sandwich
- Arvi Paan Bhajia
- Methi Na Gota
How To Make Paneer At Home
- Take about 2 liters of milk. Depending on the type of milk used, the amount of paneer you get will vary. 1 litre of Cow and Buffalo milk yields about 200-250g of paneer. However, in Kenya, I have to take about 2 liters. Heat the milk over medium heat till it becomes hot.Switch off the heat. Add about 2-3 tbsp of lemon juice to the hot milk. Allow it to rest for 2-3 minutes. Gently heat the milk and stirring it slowly. The solid milk will begin to form leaving a greenish liquid called whey.
- Place a cheesecloth or a thin cotton cloth over a sieve or colander. Place it over a bigger container.
- Pour the curdled mixture into the cloth covering the sieve or colander. Using a spoon slowly scoop up and move the mixture till the whey drains out into the bottom container.
- Allow the paneer or milk solid to cool for 5 minutes. If you’re going to use the paneer to make a sweet dish then at this stage you need to wash out the lemon juice by adding fresh tap water.
- Gather up the edges of the cloth and bring them together. Squeeze of the excess water by twisting and pressing gently the cloth containing the curdled milk.This is the stage where you now shape it into a block if you need it to prepare a curry. I didn’t shape the milk solid as anyway I have to crumble it up.
- Place a heavy object over the paneer or milk solid so that the excess water comes out. Sometimes I place a wad of newspaper under the cloth with the paneer to hasten the process of removing the excess water.
- Remove the heavy object. Open up the cloth.
- Transfer the paneer to a plate or bowl. If its shaped into a block, you can cut it into cubes.
Ingredients Required For Palak Paneer Kachori
- Paneer – can be homemade or store bought. If you buy ready made paneer make sure its not too hard. Follow the steps above to prepare paneer at home.
- Plain Flour – all purpose flour/ maida. Can replace it with wheat flour (atta).
- Oil – for the pastry, for deep frying and for the paneer filling.
- Salt – for the pastry and filling.
- Spinach Puree – thick. Blanch spinach leaves in hot water till they wilt. Remove, cool and puree with minimum amount of water. Take one
- Cashew Nuts – chopped for the filling. Can add any other nuts of your choice.
- Cumin Seeds – jeera. For the filling.
- Asafetida – hing.
- Fresh Ginger – minced or grated.
- Green Chillis – minced or finely chopped. If making for kids, best to use less and to mince or grind the chilis into a paste.
- Sugar – little required for the filling.
- Clove Powder – for the filling.
- Cinnamon Powder – for the filling.
- Lemon Juice – fresh, for the filling.
- Fresh Coriander – washed and chopped for the filling.
- Chutney– click on the link for the recipes of Green Chutney, Date tamarind Chutney and Garlic Chutney
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PALAK PANEER KACHORIS
For the pastry:
- 2 cups plain flour all purpose flour
- 4 tbsp oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ¾ -1 cup thick spinach puree
For the Paneer Filling:
- 250 g 2-2¼ cups grated paneer (cottage cheese)
- ¼ cup chopped cashew nuts
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- a½ pinch asafoetida
- 1 tsp ginger paste
- 1 tsp green chilli paste or 2 chillis finely chopped
- 1 tsp sugar
- ½-¾ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp clove powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon powder
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ cup chopped fresh coriander
- oil for deep frying
Preparation of the pastry:
- Add oil and salt to the flour and rub it in well.
- Add the spinach puree to it and form a dough that is not too hard or soft.
- Cover the dough with a lid or cling film and allow it rest for 30 minutes.
Preparation of the Paneer Filling:
- Heat oil in a wide pan over medium heat.
- When it is hot add the cumin seeds, asafoetida and chopped cashew nuts. Stir fry till the cashew turns very light pink.
- Add ginger, chilli and paneer.
- Stir and add the salt and sugar. Mix well.
- Let the filling cool down a bit. Add the lemon juice, coriander, cinnamon and clove powder. Mix well.
To prepare the Palak Paneer Kachoris:
- Divide the pastry dough into 30 parts.The balls should be about the size of a big marble or a nutmeg.
- Roll each ball into a circle of nearly 3 inches.
- Hold the circle or puree in your palm and add about 1 to 1½ tbsp of the filling. Bring the edges together into a half moon shape. Twist the edges or press with a fork. You may make round kachoris if your like.
- Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.
Frying the Palak Paneer Kachoris:
- When all the kachoris are filled, heat some oil for deep frying over high heat.
- Test if the oil is ready by putting a small, tiny piece of the dough into the oil. if it comes up immediately the oil is ready.
- Add 6 to 8 kachoris in the hot oil and half fry them. As soon as they turn white, remove them with a slotted spoon. Repeat with the remaining kachoris.
- Keep the half fried kachoris on the side till required.
- Before serving, fry them in the hot oil but this time fry them over medium to low heat till they are light golden in colour.
- Adjust the spices according to your taste.
- Make sure the pastry dough does not become too soft otherwise the pastry will remain soft on frying. I prefer using plain flour as it makes the pastry more crispy.
- To make spinach puree, blanch the leaves in hot water. Remove the leaves from the water and let it cool. Puree into a course paste using as little water as possible. Blanching is adding the vegetable into the hot water and removing it as soon as the leaves wilt or in a minute or so. One large bunch of spinach makes about 1-1½ cups of puree.
- Freeze the extra spinach puree to use for pasta, paratha, etc.
- The half fried kachoris stay good in the fridge for 2 to 3 days.
- If you are left with any dough roll it out into a puri and fry.
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