Creamy spinach curry with crispy tofu

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This is a plant-based version of palak paneer. Tofu is a wonderful substitute for mild and milky paneer cheese – you won’t miss the cheese! If you are using frozen spinach for this, thaw it in the microwave for 3–5 minutes or let it defrost at room temperature, then place in a sieve and use your hands to squeeze out as much of the water as you can before measuring.

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 block (300 g) extra-firm tofu, pressed and cut into cubes
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • soy cream or vegan yoghurt, shredded ginger and lime wedges, to garnish

Spinach curry

  • 4 cups firmly packed (250 g) spinach leaves, or cups (200 g) thawed frozen spinach
  • ½ cup (125 ml) vegetable stock
  • 1 cup (250 ml) plant milk
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2.5 cm ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and sliced
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1–2 teaspoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

Method

Toss the tofu cubes in a bowl with the cumin, nutritional yeast and a good pinch of salt. Put the oil into a medium non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat and fry the tofu until crisp and golden on all sides, about 5–7 minutes (2–3 minutes on each side).

Put all the spinach curry ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Tip into a large saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Add the tofu, turn the heat down to low and simmer until the curry has thickened, about 15 minutes.

Serve warm, garnished with a drizzle of soy cream or vegan yoghurt, shredded ginger and lime wedges.