Palak Na Walang Paneer, Vegetable Fritters, Turmeric Brown Rice

This was our family lunch on January 28. It was goooood. No doubt inspired by Ernest’s Christmas party offering which was in turn inspired by the great Kitchen Goddess Lea Co, our nourishment practice finds itself in a growing tradition of good food.

Yield: 4 servings

Palak na walang Paneer

1 tsp fennel
1/2 pc cinnamon bark
1 pc star anise
3 tbsp ghee/butter
2 stalks onion leeks, chopped
1 tbsp ginger, pounded into a paste
4 cloves garlic, pounded into a paste
4 pcs tomatoes, diced
1 pc red chili
1 cup yoghurt
600 g spinach leaves, blanched, squeezed until fully drained (reserve stems)
To taste salt
To taste pepper


  1. Grind the fennel, cinnamon bark and anise using a mortar and pestle or spice grinder. Toast the spices in a hot pan. (Traditionally, it should have cloves and cardamom, but I didn’t have any.)
  2. Add ghee/butter to the same pan and sauté the onions, ginger and garlic until aromatic.
  3. Add tomatoes and cook until soft.
  4. Add chili and yoghurt. Let it simmer for 2 minutes.
  5. Add spinach and give a quick stir. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Transfer to a blender or use a hand mixer to puree the mixture. Serve.

Vegetable Fritters

3 pcs carrots, grated
1 pc zucchini, grated
4 pcs medium-sized red radish, grated
1 pc broccoli head, blanched, chopped finely
Spinach stems from the Palak recipe, blanched, chopped finely
1/2 cup egg replacer (or 1 pc egg)
To taste salt
To taste pepper


Vegetable Fritters
  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well.
  2. Do a test fry to check seasoning. Adjust accordingly.
  3. You can fry it: heat oil in a pan, use a spoon to scoop out the mixture and scrape it off directly to the pan. Or bake it like what we did. Pre-heat your oven to 400F. Mould the mixture into patties in a baking tray. Bake it for 20 minutes and broil for 10 minutes to brown the top.
  4. We served this with sour cream. Goes really well with the palak and turmeric rice!

Turmeric Rice

1 cup brown rice
1.5 cups water
1/2 tsp turmeric powder


  1. Combine everything and cook stovetop or in your rice cooker.

5-Minute warming Mirepoix

French cooking always uses a flavor base of carrots, celery and onions. What is our local flavor base? Jjoyce uses turmeric, leeks and ginger and shows us a simple everyday way we can harness the natural sweetness and texture of the vegetables. Enjoy!

Today’s lunch from some of yesterday’s farmshare.

Saute leeks, ginger and turmeric until aromatic. Add tomatoes, sayote stalks (reserve leaves for later), chili (optional) sauté until pan is slightly caramelized. Deglaze with water or stock of preference (veg, chicken, etc). Bring to a boil then reduce to simmer. Season with salt or aminos. Add sayote leaves, wombok, cooking until slightly wilted. Drizzle with sesame oil.

Better if you sauté garlic and celery along with the other aromatics for more depth of flavor, but I didn’t have any. Great also with noodles (egg or rice), like in a hot pot restaurant!