Mattar Paneer Recipe
Paneer is an essential component of Indian cuisine, especially in North Indian or Punjabi dishes. It is a mild cheese made usually from whole milk, similar to a Farmer’s cheese. It has a firm texture and is a non-melting cheese that can withstand prolonged cooking times and still have the ability to retain its shape, texture and flavor.
Home made paneer has a wonderful fresh taste and is also easy to make but store bought paneer is just as good and is easily available in any Indian grocery store. You can also substitute firm ricotta cheese or extra firm tofu as well. Feel free to use organic milk and make your own home made organic paneer.
MATTAR PANEER (Green Peas & Paneer)
½ lb paneer (cubed and lightly pan fried)
1 medium onion, finely diced
2 large garlic cloves, finely minced
1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely minced
1 bag frozen green peas (1 lb size)
2 plum tomatoes, finely chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp turmeric (haldi)
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground cumin powder
½ tsp ground coriander powder
½ tsp red chili powder, to taste
1 tbsp tomato paste
salt to taste
2 tbsp oil (vegetable or canola)
freshly chopped cilantro leaves for garnish
In a wok or large skillet on medium high heat, add the oil. When hot, add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle. After about 30 seconds or so, add the onions. Stir and let the onions cook until they are slightly browned. Then add in the garlic and ginger. Stir for a minute or so and then add the spices (turmeric, garam masala, ground cumin powder, ground coriander powder, red chili powder and salt). Stir for an additional 2-3 minutes and then add the tomatoes and tomato paste. Stir well to combine, adding a little water if needed. Now cover, reduce the heat to low & cook for 5-6 minutes until the tomatoes have softened & broken down. Next add the green peas. Stir and let cook for a few minutes, until they are warmed through. Lastly, add the fried paneer cubes. Mix well to combine all of the ingredients and let simmer on low for 3-5 minutes. Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro leaves. Serve with fragrant Basmati rice and hot chapatis or rotis.
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