Curry is such a versatile word in the Indian cuisine. There are more than 5000 different types of curries in the cuisine but each of them taste different from one another. This is one of those curries that isn’t quite a known curry outside the borders of India. Palak in Hindi stands for Spinach and Murg means Chicken. This is a luscious curry where chicken is simmered in spinach flavored spiced curry.
Palak Murg is a north Indian/Punjabi curry which is often enjoyed with Naan, Kulcha or with flavored rice. The marination with yoghurt ensures the release of oil from the chicken and makes the chicken softer. I prefer to marinate this overnight as it makes the chicken softer and more flavorful but of course if pressed for time, you can even marinate it for just an hour.
I enjoyed this with home made Naan (its called Naan and not Naan Bread, just FYI if you are visiting my page for the 1st time). How will you like to enjoy this dish? Let me know!
Happy Cooking 🙂
In a large bowl mix all the marinade ingredients along with chicken pieces to this marinade and let it rest for few hours (1 hr is minimum or overnight).
Set aside a handful of spinach for later. Add the remaining spinach to a blender along with half cup of water and blend to a smooth paste.
Set aside the spinach paste and in the same blender add the ginger, garlic and chilli with 2-3 tbsps of water and blitz to a paste.
Heat a sauce pan and add the pureed spinach. Cook it on a low heat to rid of the moisture for 12-14 minutes until all the moisture has evaporated. Don't add any water to it as spinach will start leaving its own water eventually and gets wilted very soon. Make sure to stir every few minutes. Set this aside and add this later.
In the same pan. heat the oil in a heavy bottom saucepan. Add the whole spices including cardamom, bay leaves and cinnamon stick. Fry for 20-30 seconds. Add the onions and fry on a medium heat for 10-12 minutes. Stir well as the colour begins to change add the ginger garlic and chilli paste. Fry for a further 2 minutes stirring well. You can add a tbsp of water if you realize that it has start sticking to the base.
Make sure to scrap the base well and add the tomato puree. Fry for a couple of minutes and add the coriander powder. Stir well and add the marinated chicken pieces. Keep stirring making sure to seal the pieces well. Turn the heat up slightly and fry the chicken pieces for 8-10 minutes.
Now turn the heat to a low setting, season to taste and put the lid on cooking the chicken for 15-17 minutes. Stir halfway through the cooking process making sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Now add the pureed spinach along with the garam masala and simmer on a low heat for a further 5-7 minutes with the lid on. Turn the heat off. Chop the handful of spinach you set aside earlier and add to the gravy. Stir the entire mixture in the pan well (ensure that you don't stir it too randomly else the chicken pieces will eventually break).
Garnish with fresh coriander, slivers of ginger. Serve with naan or pulao or jeera rice.