A rich curry made using Paneer and peas. An all-time classic North Indian curry. Not the best photograph, but had to share the recipe!
The paneer that we get at the shops in the UK and also in Canada, is very different from the fresh paneer they make in India. So the technique has to be adapted to work with the ingredients we have.
1 packet paneer (225gm), cut into cubes – same size for even cooking;
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cup frozen peas;
1 medium size onion, finely chopped;
1 inch piece ginger, finely minced;
3 cloves garlic, finely minced;
2 green chillies, finely chopped (adjust to taste);
1/2 can of chopped tomatoes, crushed or 2 fresh tomatoes, pureed
1 tsp tomato puree
2 tsp kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves) crushed;
1 tsp cumin seeds;
1 tsp cumin powder;
2 tsp coriander powder;
1/2 tsp garam masala;
3/4 tsp turmeric powder;
1 tsp red chilli powder (adjust to taste/spice levels!);
1/4 tsp black pepper;
salt to taste;
1 tbsp ghee and 1 tbsp cooking oil;
handful of fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped for garnishing
Cut the paneer into cubes and soak them in a cup of milk for a couple of hours at least. This is my little secret and it works wonderfully. No need to fry the paneer in oil. The milk will make the paneer fluff up nicely.
Heat oil and ghee in a pan, add the cumin seeds and as soon as they start to sizzle, add the chopped onions. Saute till they are soft, golden and translucent – cook on medium heat, not high heat, stirring from time to time. Add the green chillies, ginger and garlic and continue sauteing. When the onions start to caramelise, add the tomatoes (fresh or canned); cover and let it cook until they soften and the oil starts to separate.
Stir in the turmeric powder, seasoning and other spices (not garam masala) followed by the peas. Cover and cook till the peas soften. Add the paneer along with the milk, and cook for 20 minutes until the curry fully cooked. Adjust the seasoning before stirring in some garam masala. Sprinkle some fresh coriander leaves and serve hot with rice or flat breads.