Palak Tempeh (Tempeh in Spinach Tomato Curry)! Vegan

Palak Paneer/Saag Paneer (Indian Cottage Cheese in Spinach or other greens curry) used to be one of the weekend quick fixes. Now since cheese is out of the picture, I tried the curry with some Tempeh. This is another creamy curry which is very versatile. You can add Tofu to it as well, and some peas and whole cashews.
Saag is the greens curry base which is exactly the same recipe without the tempeh. Saag is sometimes serves as is, or with other additions like Potatoes, Paneer(cottage cheese), garbanzo beans, vegetable fritters(Kofta), tofu or tempeh.

The curry picture is a little less green than what the curry should look like because the pictures are from when my refrigerator conked out and I had to throw all my frozen spinach. So I used about 1.5 cups of fresh spinach which was not enough to add to the green.We make this curry often for a quick dinner and hence never enough time to take pictures.!

  • 2-3 cups spinach chopped (fresh or frozen thawed)
  • 2 tomatoes chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 1 Serrano green chili
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon raw sugar or sweetner
  • 1 teaspoon kashmiri garam masala or regular garam massala (or 1/4 teaspoon each of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg and cardamom powder and 1 bay leaf)
  • 4 oz organic tempeh( about 3/4 cup chopped)
  • 2 Tablespoons cashews soaked for an hour (more or less depending on how creamy you want the curry)
  • 1/4 teaspoon asofetida (hing)
  • 1 cup water or more for desired consistency
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  1. Blend the spinach, garlic, ginger, chili pepper and tomatoes with a little water into a smooth puree and keep aside.
  2. Blend the cashews separately with little water to make cashew cream.
  3. In a large pan, add oil and heat on medium.
  4. Add the spices and asofetida and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Add in the spinach puree, salt and sugar and mix well.
  6. Add in the chopped tempeh pieces and cook on low heat for 20-25 minutes until the spinach curry thickens and starts to leave the edges.
  7. Add in the cashew cream and water for desired curry consistency. Taste and adjust salt and spices.
  8. Cook for another 6-7 minutes on medium low till the curry comes to a boil.
  9. Serve hot with with Indian flat breads like Rotis or naans, some sliced tomato salad and pickles! Other variations: Use 1 cup spinach and 1 cup mustard or collard greens!.
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  1. says

    I made this tonight and it was a big hit with DH. And it really reminds me of pesto, maybe it was just the garlic and the fact that it was green. But still. I’m seriously tempted just to make the curry and put it over some noodles! Great recipe!


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