Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Kadai Paneer - Gravy version

Over the weekend, our eating schedule goes haywire. We just let it go as it goes. Since the week goes through with planned meals, we let the weekend takes it's own course. Sometimes we have a heavy brunch followed by a light lunch. Or a light breakfast followed by eating out. Or cook up something special and spend the rest of the day watching a movie or two over HBO (too lazy to go to the theater mostly). For me, this is the best way to catch up on movies considering we have almost stopped renting movies - no time to pick, watch and return movies in time - what with the DVDs coming with scratches due to which I don't remember the last time I watched the entire movie uninterrupted on a DVD ?!?

The way I keep moving from one topic to the other, you would think that I suffer from ADD (attention deficit disorder)..No, I don't suffer from it. I just need to blog more often, what say?

Coming back to weekend meals, one such weekend when I decided to treat the two of us was when I decided to make Kadai Paneer. I have two versions of Kadai Paneer - a gravy version and a dry sauted version. The one I am posting today is the gravy version and is a complete meal by itself. Loved it - the flavor is very distinct from anything I have had before. Here is the recipe from my kitchen to yours! :)

Ingredients (Serves 3)
  • Paneer - Small cubes, about 8oz or 30 cubes (Tip from Paneer Mata :p - I usually get the big slab of Nanak Paneer and cut it into small pieces as per the requirements of the dish. Also, Nanak Paneer is available as pre-chopped small cubes - that is very convenient and a time-saver when in hurry)
  • Onion-Ginger-Garlic-Green Chilli ground paste - 12 tbsp (Tip from Masala Mata :p - 2 onion, 6 garlic clove, 1 inch ginger, 2-3 green chilli. Always keep this paste handy - another time saver and helps avoid redundant work chopping-grinding everytime you need this generic paste)
  • Cinnamom stick - 1
  • Sugar - a pinch or 1/4 tsp
  • Dry Bay leaf - 2 leaves
  • Tomato Paste - 2 tbsp
  • Heavy Cream - 1 tbsp
  • Kadai Masala - 1 tbsp
  • Kasoori Methi - 1 tsp, crushed
  • Salt - as per taste
  • Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Canola oil - 1 tbsp
  • Toasted cashewnuts for garnish

Cooking Process:
  • Heat canola oil.
  • As the oil sizzles, add dry Bay leaf, Cinnamom stick and a pinch (or 1/4 tsp) of Sugar.
  • Add the onion-ginger-garlic-green chilli ground paste and let it continue cooking.
  • When the paste is half-done, add the tomato paste with a tbsp of water and mix well with the rest of the mixture. If the masala is sticking to the sides of the pan, add a tbsp or two of water instead of adding extra oil. Tip - This is a neat trick to reduce the oil used in the cooking. No Oil Mata here - did not like the sound of this :p.
  • After 3-4 minutes, add salt, turmeric powder, kadai masala.
  • When the oil separates, add the cubed paneer pieces (you don't need to fry it separately).
  • When the paneer is well coated with the masala in about 3-5 minutes, add the heavy cream and let the dish simmer for sometime for all the flavors to develop.
  • Crush the kasoori methi in your palm and mix it in the gravy about 5 mins before you stop cooking. Thanks, Maa, for introducing me to Kasoori Methi - otherwise I was doomed in the land of Garam Masala. :)
  • Just before serving, garnish the curry with cashewnuts toasted in butter.
Enjoy this with Naan, Paratha or Maida Chakuli as we did on a lazy weekend. Maida Chakuli recipe was posted earlier by me here.


Asha said...

Gravy looks wonderful, love the color. You haven't posted in a long time or may be I was missing here! :))

notyet100 said...

first time at ur space,..;-)u hve different version of kadai paneer,..looks yum,...

Recipeswap said...

This is a great looking paneer,love the creamy texture.

Unknown said...

Loved your version of kadai paneer, looks creamy and delicious !

Netts Nook said...

This look incredible can't wait to try.

Pragyan said...

Hi Asha: Thanks! I did not know you were back blogging again..or I am just forgetting! Thanks for the sweet lil' comment. Appreciate it, as always :)

Hi notyet100: welcome to my space. Look forward to talk to you more often.

Hi n33ma: That's true..soemtimes the look and texture can add a lot of appeal!

Hi Usha: Thanks, dear!

Hi Netts Nook: Thanks a lot. Appreicate it.

Sam said...

Wow! Gravy looks so wonderful with the colours. Looks so delicious! Can't wait to see ur posting, my mouth is watering. Thanks so much for sharing.

quest said...

great recipe. its my all tim fav. in restraunts.
kindly clarify what is KADAHI MASALA. u can mail me at : - i shall be greatful