Category Archives: Side Dishes

Saag Paneer – Spinach with Cheese

This is a great spinach recipe packed full of flavor. I get tired of traditional ways of cooking with olive oil and garlic and needed to mix it up. If you are vegan and do not want to do cheese you can substitute the cheese with tofu.


1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
Kosher salt
Vegetable oil or oil of choice
12 ounces paneer, cut into 1-inch cubes, or 12 ounces tofu cut into 1-inch cubes
1-2 (16-ounce package) frozen chopped spinach
1 medium white onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon ginger paste
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 serrano chile, finely chopped (seeds removed if you don’t like it spicy!)
1/2 teaspoon store-bought or homemade garam masala
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 cup plain yogurt

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the turmeric, cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt and 3 tablespoons oil. Gently, drop in the cubes of paneer or tofu and gently toss. Let the cubes marinate while you get the rest of your ingredients together and prepped.

2. Place a large non-stick skillet over medium heat with oil add the paneer and cook until browned on one side. Flip the paneer over and cook until other side if brown. Once finished, move onto a plate.

3. Add additional oil to the pan if needed. Add the onions, ginger, garlic and chile. Saute the mixture until golden brown; about 10-15 minutes. Don’t skip this step – this is the foundation of the dish! If you feel like the mixture is drying out and burning, add a couple of tablespoons of water.

4. Add the garam masala, coriander and cumin. If you haven’t already, sprinkle a little water to keep the spices from burning. Cook, stirring often, scent of the spices cook out, about 3 to 5 minutes.

5. Add the spinach and stir well, making sure spiced onion mixture is well incorporated into the spinach. Add a little salt and 1/2 cup of water, stir, and cook about 5 minutes.

5. Turn the heat off. Add the yogurt slowly to keep it from curdling. Once the yogurt is well mixed into the spinach, add the paneer turn the heat back on until warmed through.



Aloo Gobi – Cauliflower and Potatoes

Want to add more spice to your cauliflower and potatoes as a tasty side dish? Try this delicious recipe packed with flavor!


Vegetable oil
1 large onion, peeled and cut into small pieces
1 bunch fresh coriander, separated into stalks and leaves and roughly chopped
1 serrano pepper
1 large cauliflower, leaves removed and cut evenly
1-2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into even pieces
2 (8 ounce) cans diced tomatoes
fresh ginger, peeled and grated or 1-2 teaspoon ginger paste
fresh garlic, chopped, about 4-5 cloves
1 teaspoon cumin seed
2 teaspoons turmeric
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon salt

1. Heat vegetable oil in a large saucepan.
2. Add the chopped onion and one teaspoon of cumin seeds to the oil.
3. Stir together and cook until onions become golden and translucent.
4. Add chopped coriander stalks, two teaspoons of turmeric, and one teaspoon of salt.
5. Add chopped chili and stir tomatoes into onion mixture.
6. Add ginger and garlic and mix thoroughly.
7. Add potatoes and cauliflower to the sauce plus a few tablespoons of water (ensuring that the mixture doesn’t stick to the saucepan).
8. Make sure that the potatoes and cauliflower are coated with the curry sauce.
9. Cover and allow to simmer for twenty minutes (or until potatoes are cooked).
10. Add two teaspoons of garam masala and stir.
11. Sprinkle chopped coriander leaves on top of the curry.
12. Turn off the heat, cover, and leave for as long as possible before serving.

This recipe tastes best if left alone for a few hours to let the spices mesh together.


Chole Masala – Chickpeas in tomato sauce

If you love chick peas like I do and are not sure how to use them here is a tasty recipe full of flavor! You will probably need an international grocery store to buy the garam masala.


2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 medium onion, small dice
2 teaspoons ginger paste
4 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 serrano chile, stemmed and finely chopped
1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes and their juices
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Chopped cilantro to taste for garnish (optional)
1/2 cup water

1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and cook, until fragrant, about 1 minute.

2. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, and chiles and season with kosher salt. Cook until the onions have softened.

2. Meanwhile, set a fine-mesh strainer over a medium bowl. Strain the tomatoes and reserve the juices. Coarsely chop the tomatoes into 1-inch pieces and set aside.

3. When the onions have softened, add the garam masala, coriander, measured salt, and turmeric to the frying pan and stir to coat the onion mixture. Cook, until fragrant, about 1 minute.

4. Add the chopped tomatoes, their reserved juices, the chickpeas, and the water. Stir to combine. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the flavors have melded and the sauce has thickened slightly, about 20 minutes. Garnish with chopped cilantro.



Sautéed Broccolini

Quick and easy side dish to serve next to your protein of choice!


1 pot boiling water
1 bunch broccolini
2-3 cloves garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil

Bring pot to a boil and add broccolini to pot and cook for 10 minutes. Drain broccolini into colander and blanch with cold water.

Heat oil in a pan and add garlic until fragrant. Add broccolini and season with salt and pepper to taste and cook about 5-8 minutes.

Pineapple Mango Salsa

Enjoy this with some chips or add it to your favorite taco!


Chopped fresh pineapple, about 1/2 a pineapple
Chopped fresh mango, about 3 mangos
1 small red onion chopped
1 medium tomato deseeded and chopped
1 small jalapeno deseeded
Cilantro to taste, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Juice of 1-2 limes or to taste

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and season to taste.


Parsnip Cauliflower Puree

This is a tasty substitute for mashed potatoes. The roasted garlic really takes it up a notch on flavor!


1 bag parsnips peeled and chopped
1 cauliflower cut into florets
2 garlic bulbs
2 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 tablespoons all natural butter
Chopped chives to taste

For the garlic:
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
Peel off most of the paper of the garlic
Trim off the top of the head of the garlic so that the cloves are exposed
Drizzle 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil so that the exposed garlic is covered in oil
Place garlic in aluminum foil and wrap foil around the garlic
Roast for 40 minutes
After 40 minutes a butter knife should easily penetrate the garlic cloves; this is how you know it’s done
You can continue to roast if you would like a more golden color to the garlic clove

Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add salt
Add parsnips and cauliflower and boil about 15 minutes or until a fork pierces the pieces of vegetables without effort
Drain the vegetables and add them back into the pot
Add 1-2 tablespoons of butter to the spot and let it melt
At this point you can either add the garlic to the pot and use a hand masher to soften the vegetables and combine the garlic/butter
Add all ingredients (parsnips/cauliflower mix, garlic, and chives) to a food processor and puree
Add all ingredients to the pot and use an immersion blender to puree


Carrot and Parsnip Puree

Trying to eat healthier but always going for the mashed potatoes? Here’s a recipe that may kick that craving since it is close to the same texture but obviously much more healthy for you. You can use just carrots or just parsnips to make this; I decided to combine them both.


Salt and pepper to taste
All natural butter, I used about 2 tablespoons
Scallions – chopped

Peel the carrots and the parsnips and cut into 1-2 inch pieces
Add to boiling water and cook about 10-15 minutes or until a fork easily passed through them
Drain and add the carrots and parsnips back into the pot
Season with salt and pepper
Mash with a masher and butter until all combined
Add chopped scallions to taste