February 19, 2018

Kadai Paneer Recipe with Homemade Kadai Masala Powder

There are numerous paneer recipes and amongst all, Kadai Paneer has a special place in our hearts. Especially, when made with a freshly ground kadai masala, this luscious curry is to die for. Put your favorite music and do spend an hour on a Sunday afternoon to make this flavorful curry. Almost anything goes with this dish and I highly recommend some fried rice or if you are feeling lazy frozen naan from trader joes work too. 

Kadai Paneer Recipe with homemade Kadai Masala powder

Kadai Paneer Recipe with Homemade Kadai Masala Powder

How to make Kadai Masala:

In a pan, on low heat dry roast: 4 red chillies + 1 tsp black peppercorns + 1 tbsp coriander seeds + 1 tsp cumin seeds + 1/2 tsp fennel seeds. Once the color changes to light golden brown, add 1 tsp crushed kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves). Saute for a minute, turn off heat, cool and grind into fine powder. Store in an air tight container.

How to make Kadai Paneer Gravy:

Soak 3 red chillies in hot water for 10 minutes.

If using store bought paneer like me, we need to soften it a little. Cut paneer into cubes or strips and soak in hot water for about 15-20 mins. Squeeze and light saute in 1 tbsp of oil (or ghee) until they turn brown. Set aside.

Blanch 3 tomatoes in hot water until their skins start to crackle. Turn off heat, peel the skin off. Grind into a smooth pure along with soaked red chillies.

Chop: 1 bell pepper, 1 onion, few coriander leaves for garnish

Heat a pan. Melt 1 tbsp of oil and 1 tbsp of butter on low heat. Sprinkle about 2 tsp of kadai masala. Add onions. Saute for 2-3 mins. Then add bell pepper. Mix and cook until the onions turn light brown. Cooking onions and bell pepper on low heat makes sure the kadai masala is not burnt.

Next goes in the tomato puree. Add about a cup of water, salt and cook until the oil start to float on top. This will take about 15-20 mins, so patience is the key. :-) Then add 1/2 tsp of sugar and sauteed paneer. Adjust the consistency by adding 1/2 cup of milk. Cover and cook for 10 more minutes. If you want restaurant style and extra creaminess, add cream or half-n-half.

Finally adjust salt and sprinkle some more kadai masala on top (if desired) along with coriander leaves as garnish. Serve with bread or rice.

Hope you like this paneer recipe as much as I did.

Until next time,

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