Dhaniya Aloo Palak (Potatoes and Spinach cooked in a Cilantro Paste)

Today was a lazy Sunday... kinda depressing and boring.  I ended up going out for a walk to buy some ginger and basil, and I ended up coming back with 2 bags of heavy groceries.  You really don't know what you'll need until you start noticing all those goodies at the grocery store.  On my way to the store I took a detour to Starbucks.  Lately I have loved their Coffee Frappuccino and the best part is you can customize it with Nonfat, 2%, Whole, or Soy Milk.  Today I got a 2% Coffee Frappuccino Lightly Blended without whipped cream and let me just tell you, my mood was instantly 10 times better.  I love Starbucks!  Each season I get addicted to a new drink.  This summer it is the Iced Coffee with Milk when I need to watch my calories, other times I get the Coffee Frappuccino with 2% Milk when I can afford to indulge a little and/or I feel sad.  We all have our favorite drink at Starbucks and it's great that you can enjoy one that is nonfat, low fat, full fat, or soy, minus the guilt and $4.

This past week I made Dhaniya Aloo Palak and I have to say this recipe is one of my inventions.  I sat there contemplating how can I make this spinach dish slightly different and that's how I came up with this recipe.  I've made a similar recipe in the past, however for this version of Aloo Palak I made a paste with cilantro, green chilies, and garlic, which added a lot of depth and flavor to this dish.  In addition, I skipped the sour cream.  Also, I didn't add any ginger to this dish, if you do, add a 1/2 to 1 inch piece - chopped.  Please leave your feedback!

NUTRITION: Spinach is loaded with tons of nutrients. It is rich in Vitamins A, C, and K, and is an excellent source of Iron and Folic Acid. Spinach is also a good source of Omega 3 fatty acids.  Potatoes are a good source of Vitamin C and Fiber.  Tomatoes are a good source of Vitamins A and C.


For the Dhaniya Paste (Cilantro Paste)
  • Fresh Cilantro - 1/2 bunch
  • Green Chilies - 2 
  • Garlic - 3 cloves
  • Water - 2 tbsp (optional - may need this for blending)
For the Aloo Palak (Potatoes & Spinach)
  • Olive Oil - 1 1/2 tbsp
  • Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Onion - 1 medium (chopped)
  • Plum Tomatoes - 2 (chopped)
  • Red Chili Powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander Powder - 1 tsp
  • Potatoes - 2 (peeled & cubed)
  • Fresh Spinach - 10 oz. bag
  • Garam Masala - 1/2 - 1 tsp  (I added 1 tsp)
  • salt to taste

1.Make the cilantro paste, here is what you'll need... green chilies, garlic, and cilantro.

2. Add the 3 ingredients to a Blender / Magic Bullet.

3. I added a little water to make blending easier.  Now Blend.

4. Chop a medium onion.

5. Heat a wok on medium heat.  Once hot, add Olive Oil.  Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds. 

6. Once the mustard seeds crackle, add the turmeric powder.

7. Add the onions and salt.  Saute for 5 minutes.

8. In the meantime, chop the tomatoes.

9. Now add the tomatoes to the onion mixture.  Season with salt.

10. Add the cilantro paste as well.  

11. Add red chili powder and coriander powder.  Combine.  

12. Cover with a lid and allow this to cook for 8 minutes or until a paste consistency is formed.

13. In the meantime, peel the potatoes.  Cube into bite size cubes.

14. Back to the onion-tomato mixture, this is what you should have after 8 minutes.

15. Add the potatoes and season with salt.

16. Combine and cover with a lid.  Lower the heat to dial #3.  Cook the potatoes for 12 minutes or until they are slightly soft.

17. In the meantime, get your spinach, wash and chop.

18. This is how the potato mixture should look.

19. Add the spinach to the potato mixture.  Season with salt and increase the heat to dial #5.

20. Stir for a couple minutes until the spinach wilts down.  

21. Now cover with a lid and allow the spinach-potatoes to cook for 15 minutes.  The spinach releases water which will cook the potatoes so they are edible.

22. This is what you should have after 15 minutes.

23. Add garam masala - I added 1 tsp, start with 1/2 tsp and work your way up if you can handle heat.  Combine and turn off the stove immediately.

24. For garnish, top with a dollup of yogurt.  Enjoy with rice or roti/naan!  It tastes amazing!


  1. Looks yummy! Love the presentation with the dallop of yogurt! Sorry you were feeling a bit sad on this sunday, but if it makes you feel any better, I intend to make this recipe tonight, as it made my mouth water after looking at the pics! :o) Love you!

  2. I love Starbucks. I have to limit myself a certain number of visits per month or I would go broke there!

    This dish looks AMAZING!!!

  3. I love how you include the pictures, for a non-cook like me, they really help!!!

  4. Yum, I love aloo palak! Must admit, I'm one of those cilantro haters, but I can easily see myself replacing it with parsley. :)

  5. Ooh, I tried this with tofu instead of aloo and it came out really well, if I do say so myself. My husband was a bit disappointed that it was a tofu dish instead of meat, but even he loved it chapatis. So, great recipe Nish!

  6. can i substitute fresh spinach with frozen?

  7. @Neha.. Yes you can, however it will alter the taste, fresh is always better.
    1. Follow the directions for microwaving the frozen spinach.
    2. Drain out the access water using paper towels.
    3. Add it to the tomato/onion mixture.
    Let me know how it turns out.

    Thanks! :-) Is this Neha Singh?

  8. yup thats me..will try it out soon n let you know how it turns out :)
    P.S: my cooking has remarkably improved since i started following ur blog!! :)) thanks!

  9. this recipe looks awesome! i just did a post about how tasty spinach can be and included one of your photos! the pictured gives you credit in the caption and links right to this page. thanks for sharing! here's the link to the blog post - http://reluctantwwfoodie.wordpress.com/2011/07/08/spinach-can-be-tasty/


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