Jul 22, 2010

Paneer Mutter Masala(Paneer & Green peas in creamy sauce)

   I first tasted this dish from my sisters home. She had prepared it very rich with thick cream and spices. Those days I didn't even know the basics of cooking and had wondered "Wow! hats off to Indian cooks!! They have no difficulty even in taming a breakfast category pretty cheese into a spice laden dinner curry." Later, when I started cooking myself and was crawling towards each milestones, I thought of giving Paneer a try.

       Well, I have changed the recipe a little bit, I mean less rich ... because I have always hated the taste of milk, my mom says, even from the infant days. So to avoid the milky taste from seeping into the dish, I replaced the thick cream with low fat milk.

Paneer Mutter Masala 

   Serves 4 to 6

You will need:

2 cups paneer or cottage cheese (Cut into small cubes)
1 cup green peas
1 cup water
2 medium sized onions
1 tsp red chilly powder
1 tsp minced ginger
1 tsp minced garlic
3 tbsp tomato paste
half cup low fat milk
25 grams cashew nuts (soaked for an hour)
3/4 tsp garam masala powder
1/4 tsp fennel seeds powdered
1/4 tsp kaasoori methi powder (dried fenugreek leaves)
2 tbsp butter
salt to taste
coriander leaves for garnishing
1 tbsp cooking oil
1 tsp sugar

Method of Preparation

1) Heat oil in a pan and add the sliced onions and saute, until they become tender. Remove from pan and grind it well with soaked cashew nuts to form a fine paste.

2) Add butter to a wok and heat. Add minced ginger and garlic to it. When the aroma of ginger and garlic comes out, lower the flame and add  red chilly powder. Then add tomato paste or tomato puree and saute.

3) Then add one cup of water and green peas (cook it in a medium flame by covering the wok).

4) When it is cooked well, add the ground onion-cashew paste, fennel seed powder, garam masala powder, kasoori methi powder, salt and paneer cubes to it. And cook for 5 minutes. You can add paneer cubes either fried in little oil or as such.

5) Finally add milk and sugar to it and switch off the flame. Garnish with coriander leaves.

6) Serve hot with bread or chapattis.

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