Friday, March 4, 2011

Mutter Paneer

What do you do when you have just gotten over a "limbo" by treating yourself to a gorgeous hair-cut? You make mutter paneer! :D

I had a packet of paneer sitting in my freezer for quite sometime now. Given the fact that I'm off to China for two weeks and then to Germany for another 4 months for my internship, I decided NOT to shop anymore and just cook all the leftover grocery at home. So the debate of palak paneer or mutter paneer began and VJ finally won with his pleas for mutter paneer.

I found this recipe online on some website around 2006 I guess. Not sure. I tried searching it again and did not find the link. I know its somewhere in my home computer desktop, but that's back home in India. I've always followed this recipe for mutter paneer although its very different from the other ones I found yesterday. If you are the kind soul who posted this, a million thanks to you and please send me your name so that I can reference you for due credit :)

Onions - 2 medium
Cloves - 4
Cinnamon (dalchini) - 3 inch piece
Turmeric powder - 1/4 to 1/2 tsp
Oil - 3 tbsp (you can also use ghee)
Ginger - 2 inch piece (crushed)
Garlic - 3 to 4 cloves (crushed)
Green chillies - 2 spicy hot (slit)
Tomatoes - 2 medium (pureed)
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Green peas - 4 cups
Paneer - 1 or 2 cups
Salt to taste

1. Add 1 tbsp oil and first fry the cloves and cinnamon lightly in it. Then add the onions and fry well. Let it cool and grind it to a fine paste in a blender. Set aside.
2. Now add the remaining oil in a pan, splutter jeera in it and then add the green chillies, ginger and garlic. Fry until the raw smell of garlic and ginger fades off.
3. Add the onion paste and mix well. Then immediately add the tomato puree and cook until the oil seperates.
4. Add the spices (chilli powder and coriander powder) and let it fry for another minute.
5. Then add water as needed, green peas, paneer and salt and cook on medium until it is all well blended. It takes about 15 - 20 mins for me.

You can add some freshly chopped coriander to garnish it or also use some garam masala along with the other spices. I used frozen peas here and not fresh ones, so if you are using fresh peas you may need to add more water to cook it in the gravy. Pre-cooking it is also another option. You can use ginger - garlic paste too instead of the crushed ginger and garlic.

I don not have the link with me now. But please leave a comment if you are the one who put up this recipe.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Fried Rice

I was missing my mom badly yesterday and decided to make this comfort food for my soul.

It's a mom-daughter ritual-recipe that was made every Saturday on my once-a-month weekend trips to home from Bangalore to Pondichery after I moved out. Mom always makes this with cucumber raitha or onion raitha. Miss you mom... :)

Ghee - 4 tbsp
Jeera - 1/2 tsp
Pepper - 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon (dalchini) - 1/2 inch piece
Cloves - 4
Bay leaf - 1
Ginger - 2 inch piece (crushed)
Green chillies - 2 spicy hot (slit)
Onion - 1 medium (finely chopped)
Potato - 1 medium
Carrots - 2
Green beans - 6 to 8
Capsicum - 1 medium or 1/2 large
Green peas - 1/2 cup
Rice - 2 cups
Salt to taste

1. Use a nice thick bottomed pan and heat 1 tbsp ghee in it. Wash the rice and fry it in the ghee until the moisture is gone. Remove the rice and let it cool.
2. In the same pan now add the remaining ghee and add all the whole garam masala ingredients including the green chillies and ginger and let them fry for a minute.
2. Then add the onions and fry them until they are transparent. Do not brown them.
3. Cube the potatoes, chop the carrots, beans and capsicum and wash the peas. Now add the vegetables and fry them for 3-5 mins.
4. Add the fried rice with 3 cups of water (this is enough to cook the rice and vegetables without over cooking them) and salt to taste.
5. Mix well and cover it with a tight lid with air pressure vents and cook on medium until all the water is evaporated. Then set it on low and let it cook for another 5 minutes or until the rice is done.

Mommy dearest :) If you have a concern with this recipe, please leave a comment and I will get back to you.