Stolen Paneer (A Recipe)

Stolen Paneer (A Recipe)

Waiting in line for coffee this morning, I complimented a girl’s dress. “Thanks! I stole it from my sister; I just love it.”

I get it. We all want to steal things from our friends sometimes. But let’s just keep it to recipes.

What’s in a Name?

Resh is not an Indian word. It is my friend’s name. I stole this recipe after she brought her now-famous paneer to my house one Thanksgiving.

(An aside – see, I told you I usually have Indian food for Thanksgiving!)

I seriously have no idea what this dish is called. It may not even have a name. But it is so good that I have to share it with you anyway.

Don’t be Afraid

I know this recipe has a rather long list of ingredients. It is an unfortunate side effect of cooking northern Indian food. (And part of the reason I usually stick to Maharashtrian food)

Here are the basics you need to know/have. Once you have these spices in your pantry, you can whip up a world of Indian dishes.
North Indian Spices

  • Cumin (seeds and ground)
  • Coriander (ground)
  • Garam Masala (ground)
  • Bay Leaves
  • Turmeric (ground)
  • Red Chili Powder
  • Black Mustard Seeds
  • Fennel Seeds

I highly recommend getting them from an Indian grocer if you can, because they will be much cheaper and fresher than the jarred spices at your average grocery store.

Resh Paneer Recipe

Prep time: 30 mins
Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • two medium sized onions
  • one medium tomato (or half a can of diced tomatoes)
  • ginger root
  • two garlic cloves
  • two green finger chilies
  • one block of paneer (400 grams)
  • canola or vegetable oil
  • yogurt

Spices

  • cumin seeds
  • garam masala
  • turmeric
  • ground cumin
  • coriander powder
  • red chili powder
  • bay leaves
  • salt

Method

  1. Heat three tablespoons of oil over medium-low heat.
  2. Finely chop the onions then add a teaspoon of cumin seeds to the oil.
  3. When the seeds begin to pop, put in the chopped onions, stirring occasionally.
  4. Peel and finely chop a one inch piece of ginger, two cloves of garlic and two green finger chilies. Dice the tomato (if using whole).
  5. Once the onions have turned golden brown (about eight to ten minutes), then add the ginger and garlic, a half teaspoon each turmeric powder and garam masala and a teaspoon red chili powder. Mix and cook for three to four minutes mins.
  6. Cut the paneer into squares (slicing off one end to make a square shape, about 3/4 of an inch thick) and cut each square in half.
  7. Add the diced tomato, chopped chilies and two bay leaves. In a bowl, beat a half cup of yogurt, then add to the pan. Mix and simmer for five minutes.
  8. Fry the paneer pieces quickly over medium heat (without oil). You just want them to get a toasty look on each side.

    Fry paneer until golden by Nikki T

  9. Salt the curry to taste, add a cup of water and turn the heat to high. Once it is boiling, add the paneer.
  10. Cook for two to three minutes and remove from heat. The paneer should be tender. Don’t let it get tough.

Enjoy!

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