The forever favourite Paneer dish is what I made as the main course when a vegetarian couple came over for dinner last week. Without much ado, I'll get down to business and jot down the recipe.....
A.For the Green paste :
*Palak : 12 small bunches
*Pudina - a small sprig (Optional....my vegetable vendor always gives me a complimentary sprig or Pudina ;))
*Green Chilli -1 or 2
*Salt - 1 tsp
*Sugar - 1/2 tsp
B.Other Ingredients :
*Paneer : 400 gms (cut into small cubes or any shape you desire)
*Kesuri Methi - 1 tbsp (Optional), soaked in 1/2 cup of warm water
*Whole garam masala - 2 elaichi; 1 medium stick of cinnamon; 2 cloves*Bay Leaf -1
*Onion paste - 1 bowl
*Tomato paste - 1 bowl
*Ginger past - 1 tsp
*Cumin (Jeera) powder - 1tsp
*Coriander (Dhaniya/Dhone) powder - 1tsp
*Fresh Cream - 2 tbsp (Since I did not have it, I substituted as given in 'C')
*Ghee - 2 tsp
*Roasted and powdered Garam Masala - 1/2 tsp
*Flour :3-4 tbsp
* Oil - 4 tbsp
C.Fresh Cream Substitute :
*Fresh malai obtained after milk is boiled - 2tbsp
*Grate cheese : 1 cube
In a pan add the blended fresh malai and the grated cheese. Bring to a boil. Spinkle some water if to thick. Keep aside.
1. Blend all ingredients at 'A'. Keep aside.
2. In a wok, heat the Oil and throw in bay leaf, whole garam masala and whole jeera and a dash of sugar. Let them splutter and give off their lovely aroma
3. Add the onion paste and fry till it turns a light brown.
4. Add the ginger paste
5. Add the tomato paste and stir for sometime.
6. Add the masala paste made of jeera+dhaniya and cook the masala well.
7. Add the blended green paste. Add salt. Stir well to mix the masala and the palak paste for 3-5 minutes.
8. Add the cubed paneer and continue stirring slowly to ensure that the paneer does not break.
9. Add the soaked kasuri methi along with the water. Mix well
10. Cover the wok with a lid, lower the flame and let it cook till it comes to a boil. Check once in a while so that the gravy doesnt burn at the botton.
11. Mix the flour (ata) with some water to make a medium consistency past. Add to the boiling gravy and mix very well. This gives the gravy a smooth and creamy consistency.
12. In a small skillet, heat the ghee and add the roasted garam masala powder and add to the palak paneer gravy is it boils in the wok. Mix.
13. Take it off the flame and add the fresh cream or the substitute I made as at 'C'
Palak paneer tastes good with Paratha, Roti or Rice