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Matar Paneer



Matar Paneer is very tasty punjabi dish from the north of india, it contains paneer (Indian cottage cheese) and peas which have been simmered in a rich, spicy tomato sauce. Paneer is an Indian cheese, a little akin to haloumi in that it holds its shape when cooked, it also acts as a sponge for all the delicious flavours in this rich curry sauce. This is vegetarian food at its finest, and as a committed carnivore I think I would choose this curry over a steak any day.



Ingredients

500g Paneer, cut in to 2.5cm cubes

Oil, for deep frying

2 Tablespoons Ghee

2 Medium Onions, finely chopped

1 thumb sized piece of ginger, finely chopped

2 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped

1 teaspoon whole cumin

1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon chilli powder

1x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes, blended until smooth

pinch of sugar

salt

200g frozen peas, defrosted in boiling water

1/2 teaspoon garam masala

Basmati rice (to serve with)


Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 45 minutes

Serves: Enough for 4 People (when served with rice)


Instructions

  1. Heat a deep frier or a pot with oil and get the oil up to a temperature of about 180c, there needs to be enough oil for deep frying the paneer. Drop the paneer in the oil and cook for a couple of minutes until the paneer is golden brown (see photos). Once the paneer is cooked drop it into a bowl of cold water and set aside until needed. (Be very careful when deep frying, it is very easy to cause a fire)

  2. Get a large heavy bottomed pot and place on a medium heat. Add the ghee and onions and fry gently until starting to brown, about 10 minutes

  3. While the onions are frying, grind the coriander and cumin roughly in a mortar and pestle and add the turmeric and chilli powder

  4. Once the onions are ready add the garlic, ginger and spice mix, fry, stirring regularly for about a minute and then add a splash of water to stop it sticking

  5. Add the tin of tomatoes and turn then heat down to low and simmer for about 10 minutes

  6. Add 200ml water, a pinch of sugar and salt to taste and simmer for another 10 minutes with the lid on

  7. Drain the paneer and the peas and add to the pot along with the garam masala

  8. Simmer for a couple of minutes and serve with rice or flat bread

  9. Enjoy!



The deep fried paneer



Frying the Onions


Adding the garlic and spices

Simmering the tomatoes

Matar Paneer
Matar Paneer - Simmering the peas and paneer












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