“Maa, Please make Paneer Matar today?” pleads Junior (as Pa, sometimes addresses the younger one). Got to give it to her though, she pleads to me thus, only occasionally, like… every other day! I obliged, as a Mother’s Day Special, incidentally ‘Mother’s Day’, shouldn’t it be like… everyday?!
Paneer Matar, loved by kids and adults alike, is a nutritious, healthy and a wholesome dish. I am positive, once you have tried this easy recipe, you will think twice, before ordering the oily | greasy | spicy | stale paneer versions at restaurants.
Paneer | Goats Cheese
Boil 2 litres of organic cow or buffalo milk, to get Paneer or even goat’s milk (healthier alternative) to get Goat’s cheese. Please note, full cream milk gives good yield. Once it comes to boil, squeeze in the juice of a lemon. The milk will curdle and separate into whey and paneer. Filter out the paneer, from whey (a good source of protein, which can be used for making soft Roti,Chapati or Paratha dough) with the help of a strainer or colander. Wrap the strained paneer in a clean muslin cloth or cheesecloth and place a heavy weight on top of it, such as a slab of stone, to drain out the whey completely. Keep this in a bowl, to collect any remaining whey, for about 3 – 5 hours. Soft | Fresh | Silken Homemade Paneer available for our recipe.
Prep time : 10 mins; Cooking time: 20 mins; Serves : 4
- Paneer / Tofu – 250 gms
- Peas – 1 cup
- Onions – 4
- Tomatoes – 4
- Green chilies – 1 or 2
- Ginger – 1 inch
- Garlic cloves – 3 – 6
- Cashew nuts – 9
- Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
- Red chilly powder – 1/2 tsp
- Cumin powder / Jeera powder – 1 tsp
- Coriander powder – 1 tsp
- Garam Masala powder – 1 tsp
- Dried Kastoori Methi leaves – 2 tsp
- Coriander leaves – 3 sprigs
- Sunflower oil / Vegetable oil – 1 – 2 tbsp
- Rock Salt powder – as per taste
- Cream (optional) – 1 tbsp
1. Roughly chop the onions, tomatoes, green chillies, ginger, garlic and coriander leaves. Chop the paneer / tofu slab into small 1/4 – 1/2 inch square pieces. Set aside.
2. Heat oil in a pan, then add cashew nuts ( the reason behind this creamy dish). Saute them till light brown, throw in the onions and salt, which helps the onions, sweat and cook faster. Add in the green chilies, ginger and garlic and saute for a few more mins. Then add the tomatoes and cook till the tomatoes soften. Switch off heat and let is cool down to room temperature.
3. Blend the cooled down mixture in a blender to a smooth puree. Transfer the puree back again, to the same cooking pan.
4. Switch on the gas, add peas, turmeric powder, red chilly powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder and about 1 – 1 1/2 cups of water or as required, to make the gravy of right consistency. Cover and cook for about 5 – 10 mins, till the peas are done. Open the lid and add chopped Paneer, crushed Kastoori Methi leaves and switch off the heat.
5. Garnish with cream (optional) and chopped coriander leaves.
Vegan Version :
Replace Paneer with Tofu and skip cream and follow the above recipe.
Delicious, creamy,yummy Paneer Matar is a preferred choice combination, for most breads like Roti, Naan, Paratha and Basmati Rice varieties.