Friday, May 22, 2009

Paneer Butter Masala

Fried cottage cheese cubes (aka Paneer) and peas are drenched in a creamy, flavorful, mildly spicy dish with a gravy base of tomato, onion, garlic, ginger, spices, cashews and lots of butter!

Step 1 ingredients
1 tbspn oil
1 cup paneer pieces

Heat oil in pan on high and stir fry the paneer until most sides of paneer are golden brown.
Place on paper towel on a plate to drain.

Step 2 ingredients
1 tspn oil
pinch ajwain seeds
1 1/2 cup coarsely chopped onions, pureed

In same pan, heat on teaspoon oil and add ajwain. When they sizzle and smell comes, add onion puree. Stir fry in oil about 5 minutes.

Step 3 ingredients
3 tablespoons tomato puree
3/4 cup water
pinch turmeric
1/2 tsp garam masala
3/4 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 red chili powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
1/4 cup cashew

Add all these ingredients into a blender and puree.
Add this puree to the pan with onions, ajwain and oil. Heat and stir on low-medium heat. (If on high this will splutter out of pan and create a mess. It may splutter on low heat too. Be sure to stand away or wear an apron or 'old clothes' as it could stain.
Stir this mix for 5 minutes.

Step 4 ingredients
2 tbspn butter

Add this butter to the paste/gravy and stir nicely.
This adds additional salt to the gravy which will offset the peas that will go in.

Step 5 ingredients
3/4 cup green peas

To the gravy add the (cooked) peas and the previously fried paneer.

Keep on low heat and stir for next 10 minutes.

Eat with rice or roti (chapati).

If you make homemade paneer, keep the paneer water (whey) and use that to create chapati batter or cook rice. Makes rice or roti fluffy and creamy.

Note: This is most likely a high-fat dish. It definitely tastes rich. In fact, though there are flavorful and hot spices, because of all the creaminess of the gravy, the final product is more flavorful than 'hot and spicy'. In fact, in my opinion, the best taste for this dish is flavorful and creamy rather than hot, spicy and creamy.

This recipe is inspired by Aayi's Paneer Butter Masala.

Related Posts/Sites:
Indian Cooking Made Easier Series by Oldernwiser0

Homemade Paneer - This post has recipe measurements and an alternate video by vahchef at YouTube

Picture Perfect Paneer- Pictures of Paneer made by blog author

Peas Pullao - Peas and rice boiled with paneer water (whey)

Thank you for reading.