Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Paneer Tikka masala

Paneer dishes are one of those things that no one can get enough of. My family is no different. I have come to liking it after quite a while. I still do not like or order paneer dishes in the restaurant. I do not like the way it is smothere in cream and has that pale orange look which sends me to the exits.

The trick to making any paneer gravy is not make it overly rich. Since paneer is alredy milk based there is no reason to add more by way of cream. Adding yogurt for me seems to hit the right spot.

Paneer Tikka masala is derived I am guessing from its popular cousing the Chicken Tikka Masala. While chicken tikka masala seems to a be good way for most restaurants to repurpose their grilled or tandoori chicken into a new dish and that is precisely why I have developed an aversion to it. Paneer tikka masala on the other hand seems to be just the vehicle for smartly using the grilled paneer or tandoor paneer. Reason being paneer can be softened and it absorbs all the spices while chicken on the other hand gets drier and when it is dunked in a wet gravy only gets progressively worse. Well at least that is my take on it.

I never have to worry aboug grilled panner or pan roasted paneer because it usually disappears in no time. So to make this paneer tikka masala I make the tandoori paneer just before making the masala. While it is easy to make the paneer fresh I don't do that often enough :(

I boil the onions, ginger, garlic and green chilies to reduce the cooking time and oil needed to cook if blended raw.

Recipe in pictures,

In a sauce pan, boil the onions, ginger, garlic and red/green chilies for about 10-15 minutes. Cool and blend to a paste and set aside.
Cut the paneer piece into 1 inch pieces and in a bowl mix the paneer pieces with the spices, so they are well coated. Heat oil in a wide mouthed.
Saute the paneer pieces till the spices on the paneer turn color. Set aside.
In the same pan add a bit more oil and add chopped onion and saute till it turns brown. Add the bell peppers and saute for about 4-5 minutes.
Add the blended onion paste and saute for about 6-8 minutes or till the oil starts to bubble on top. Now add all the spice powders and give a good mix.
Blend the tomatoes to a paste.
Mix in the blended tomato paste and let it come to a boil.
Add beaten yogurt and gently mix it in. Add salt and let cook till you see bubbles on top.
Add in the paneer pieces, cook for 2-3 minutes and add coriander leaves and turn off the heat.

Red JalapeƱo Peppers
Paneer Tikka Masala
Preparation Time:20 minutes
Cooking Time:45 minutes
  1. 1 1/2 blocks of paneer (I used 12 oz block) cut into 1 inch pieces
  2. 2 cups of bell pepper chopped into 1 inch pieces
  3. 1 1/2 cup roughly chopped + 1/2 cup finely chopped onions
  4. 4 garlic cloves + 2 inch piece of ginger
  5. 4 green or red chilies
  6. 1/2 cup of yogurt
  7. 1/2 tbsp chili powder or to taste
  8. 1 tsp turmeric powder
  9. 1 tbsp coriander powder
  10. 2 tsp cumin powder
  11. 2 cups of tomatoes pureed
  12. handful of coriander leaves
  13. for the paneer - turmeric powder(2 tsp), garlic powder (3 tsp), ginger powder (3 tsp), chili powder(3 tsp), pepper powder(2 tsp), cumin powder(1 tsp) and salt
  14. 2-3 tbsp oil
  15. salt to taste
  1. Mix all the powders for the paneer with a bit of oil and toss the paneer in it, till the paneer is well coated.
  2. In a saute pan, add 1/2 cup of water and add the onion, garlic, ginger and the chilies. Let it boil for about 8-10 minutes. Cool and make a smooth paste.
  3. In a wide mouthed pan, add oil and saute the paneer pieces and set them aside.
  4. In the same pan, add a bit more oil and add the finely chopped onion and saute till the colors starts to turn color.
  5. Add in the cubed bell pepper and saute for 4-5 minutes.
  6. Add in the blended onion paste and saute till the oil starts to separate.
  7. Now add in all the spice powder and mix well. Add the blended tomato paste and if required a cup of water and let it cook for another 6-8 minutes till the oil starts to show on top.
  8. Add in the cup of whisked yogurt and let it cook for another 5-6 minutes.
  9. Add the sauteed paneer pieces and salt. Let it cook for a minute more. Add coriander leaves and turn off the heat.
Like what you are reading? Subscribe!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by. Appreciate you taking the time.
Comments embedded with links, spam and in poor taste will not be published.