If you hail from the northern part of India then you probably grew up on Paneer as part of your regular menu at home. For the uninitiated Paneer is a fresh un-aged cheese which is made by adding lemon juice or vinegar to hot milk. The whey separates from the milk leaving the curd/milk solids behind. Milk solids are then strained and they harden after a few hours and is normally used to make savoury and sweet dishes.
In our growing up years my cousin sisters and I absolutely loved Paneer so our Grand-mum (Aai) would incorporate it once a month in the menu at home. It was like a Major Food Eventthat we looked forward to. Circa 2015 nothing much has changed I still love my Paneer. Not only is it really tasty and versatile, it is a great source of protein and calcium.
A couple of weeks ago on a Thursday evening I got home from work and was feeling pretty lazy and did not really want to spend more than 30 minutes in the kitchen. A quick fridge raid lead to finding some Paneer in the fridge and some left over cream. I decided to rustle up an easy Paneer Curry that would tantalize the taste buds.
Panch Phoran is one my favourite spice mixes. I have used it in this recipe previously (Click here to reach the post) Panch Phoran is made by mixing equal quantities of fenugreek seeds, nigella seeds, cumin seeds, black mustard seeds and fennel seeds. It is easily available in you local specialty store.
Today’s recipe incorporates Panch Phoran to give you a delicately spiced yet a flavourful dish. A quick-fix weekday meal that will satisfy those Paneer cravings. Make it for your next House party and be sure to win loads of Accolades…..
So here is my recipe for a super quick and super simple – Mutter Paneer with Panch Phoran.
The Ingredients needed are:
- Diced Tomato – 250 gms
- Light Cream – 125 gms
- Peas – 150 gms
- Paneer – 250 gms – cubed
- Garam Masala- 1/2 teaspoon
- Red Chilli Powder- 1 teaspoon – Use Degi or Kashmiri Mirch for the colour
- Lemon Juice- 1 teaspoon
- Green Chilli- 1- finely chopped
- Ginger Paste- 1/2 teaspoon
- Garlic Paste- 1/2 teaspoon
- Kasoori Methi- 2 teaspoon
- Panch Phoran – 1 tablespoon
- Vegetable Oil- 1 tablespoon
- Sugar- 1.5 teaspoon
- Salt to taste
Method of Preparation:
If you notice there are no onions in the ingredient list. That is a deliberate omission. Sometimes laziness is a good thing. The minute I start chopping onions I cry a river. So no-onion recipes give me eternal joy.
For this recipe you need a good non stick wok/ kadhai. Keep it on medium-high flame and add the vegetable oil. Next add the Panch Phoran and let it crackle. Then reduce the flame to medium. Add the ginger and garlic paste and mix well till the raw smell goes away.
Next add the diced tomato and mix well and let it cook till the oil leaves the sides. This should take about 5-7 minutes. Then add the salt, sugar, garam masala, red chilli powder and kasoori methi . Mix well and cover with a lid for 5 more minutes.
By this point your entire kitchen will be fragrant and the spices would have blended well with tomatoes. Panch Phoran and kasoori methi is a lethal fragrant combination for your senses.
Now add the steamed peas and paneer and mix and cover with lid for 2-3 minutes. Next add the cream . Mix well and cover for 2-3 minutes more. Lastly add the lemon juice and finely chopped green chilli and mix well.
This gravy is not too thin or thick. If you want to thin the gravy can add some milk to the same if needed. Your Mutter Paneer with Panch Phoron is ready in a jiffy.
You can serve it with fresh Chapati/ Naan with some onion salad and some tangy Mango pickle.
Recipe ,Food styling and Photography – Sharvari P Mehan
Do let me know how you liked today’s recipe. As always love to receive your feedback in the comments below. Happy Sunday and have a great week ahead.