Paneer Badami

“I just love to see you in my plate.”

I love paneer, its high protein and a very versatile ingredient. You can make croquettes, a bake, tandoori tikka which is a hot favourite, a cheesy sandwich filling , a spicy wrap and of course a delicious curry, to name a few.

Whenever I fall short of cashewnuts I add almonds as a substitute, it’s equally delicious. Of course, the process takes a little longer as you have to blanch the almonds first and then grind it to a paste – but it’s fine. With regard to tomato purée , nothing like fresh tomatoes ( blanching in hot water and grinding to a purée) but if you have a tetra pack of tomato purée, go ahead and use it. Well, I use it quite often and always see that’s there’s one in the fridge. I only use Kashmiri chilli powder- the end product is rich in colour and less spicy, so even if you had a little extra, it’s fine. With regard to sugar, I add powdered jaggery as I try to avoid refined sugar as much as I can. I use a mix of ghee and oil for any dish, particularly when I’m cooking vegetarian food.

At home, we have paneer at least once a week, and I alternate the dishes I make with it. The brand is either Milky mist or Hatsun paneer. Check the date always. The fresher, the better.

This dish is a favourite of mine and it’s medium spice. You can just make a Pulao or have it with some rotis.

Sharing the recipe with all of you,

Ingredients:

  • Paneer -250 gms
  • Almonds- 10-12
  • Onions -2 medium (sliced thick)
  • Capsicum -1 medium (sliced thick)
  • Tomato puree -3/4 cup
  • Kashmiri chilli powder -2 tsp
  • Turmeric -1/2 tsp
  • Ginger -garlic paste -1 tbsp
  • Cream/ yogurt- 1/2 cup
  • Salt
  • Garam masala- 1 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder -1 1/2 tsp
  • Cummin powder -1/4 tsp
  • Cardamom seeds of 2
  • Sugar/ jaggery- 1 tsp
  • Milk – 1/2cup
  • Water -1/2 cup
  • Kasturi Methi -2 tbsp crushed
  • Coriander leaves to garnish
  • Ghee/ oil

Method:

  • Soak paneer in hot water and keep aside.
  • Soak almonds in water and microwave on high for 2 minutes. Remove the skin and grind the almonds to a fine paste with a little water.
  • In a little ghee, fry the sliced onion till brown.
  • Add the capsicum sliced and fry lightly.
  • Add ginger garlic paste and fry well.
  • Add all the spice powders, tomato purée and water and cook covered on a low flame for 5-10 minutes.
  • Add sugar/ powdered jaggery.
  • Add the almond paste and cook well.
  • While on a low flame, add the milk ( should be fresh), cream or yoghurt and stir well. Let it cook for a couple of minutes. Test seasoning and if you want a little more gravy, add milk or water or a combination of both.
  • Finally, add in the paneer cubes (keep aside 2-3 cubes to garnish at the end) and crushed Kasturi Methi.
  • Let the curry boil for 3-4 minutes on a low flame.
  • Garnish with a few roasted almonds and coriander leaves and grated paneer.

Chefs tips:

  • Paneer should be fresh, cut into cubes and immersed in hot water.
  • You can add chopped ginger and garlic ( 1 tbsp each ) in the place of ginger garlic paste.
  • Milk should be boiled and cooled to room temperature when you add it to the masala.
  • In case you don’t have cream, you can whisk 1/2 a cup of yoghurt and add it to the gravy.
  • You can do the same recipe with mixed vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, peas, carrots, mushroom etc.
  • For added flavour, roast the crushed Kasturi Methi leaves on a tawa, crush and add it to the masala.
  • The almonds to garnish the dish has to be dry roasted. (microwave the blanched almonds for 2-3 minutes).
  • This dish serves 4-6.

Till my next post,

Cheers

Rose

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